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St. Margaret Mary Roman Catholic Church

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1924, Edward J. Weber. 1993, Al Vargo. 2500 Dudley Ave. (east corner of Dudley Ave. and 25th St.)

One of Edward J. Weber's accomplished West Virginia churches, this sturdy Neo-Romanesque building of Indiana limestone is almost elemental in its simplicity. The original Dudley Avenue facade is unadorned save for a recessed, arched entrance topped by a niche that contains a statue, sculpted by Francis Aretz, of the church's patron saint. At the rear, the slightly angled stone wall, adorned only with a stone crucifix, rises to terminate in a bell gable.

In 1993 the church was greatly enlarged and remodeled, in large part to provide additional space where parishoners could gather before and after services. The program resulted in a new nave, set at a 90-degree angle to the old one, which was converted into transepts and chancel. Although extensive and complex, these alterations were brilliantly conceived and accomplished, respecting the older fabric and its significant ecclesiastical fittings. As part of the simultaneously executed landscaping program, William Hopen of Sutton sculpted a basrelief image of the Sacred Heart, carved from the one original interior pillar that had to be removed.

Writing Credits

S. Allen Chambers Jr.

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