The congregation of Cedar Grove Missionary Baptist church has departed the city for their new home a few expressway exits East in Cheektowaga, a six acre campus on Maryvale Road. The Challenger wrote about the congregation's 2010 move in a November 2011 issue, here. I only recently noticed the for sale sign and called to check on the asking price. The phone number is disconnected.
Constructed by the city's rapidly expanding German population, the Emmanual Evangelical Reformed Church opened for religious services in 1895. The towering Humboldt Parkway church replaced a wooden chapel that was first constructed in 1883.
This is the second house of worship now available for sale along the "bathtub" section of the Kensington Expressway. Mike Puma recently wrote about the $300,000 price drop on St. Francis de Sales church across the great divide from Cedar Grove.
Leaving behind and abandoning legacy houses of worship is not new. It happens frequently on the East Side. fixBuffalo readers may recall the plight of 41 Spruce Street and its standing demolition order, now missing stained glass windows and inviting (now open) front door. This is the story that's unfolding when some African-American congregations decided to leave the inner city and move on. The tragic development unfolding right now at Sacred Heart Church on Emslie Street is quickly becoming the last chapter in a story that is becoming all too familiar.
The future of this Humboldt Parkway landmark remains uncertain.
related posts: fixing the Kensington (part 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)