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Church of the Epiphany - National Fund For Sacred Places
2017 Cohort

Church of the Epiphany

(Episcopal)

Los Angeles, California

Founded in 1887, Church of the Epiphany is the oldest operating Episcopal church in the Los Angeles area. 

Church of the Epiphany by the National Trust for Historic Preservation

Church of the Epiphany by the National Trust for Historic Preservation

2017 Cohort

Church of the Epiphany

(Episcopal)

Los Angeles, California

Founded in 1887, Church of the Epiphany is the oldest operating Episcopal church in the Los Angeles area. 

The original church was designed in the Romanesque Revival style by English architect Ernest Coxhead. To account for the growing congregation, the church commissioned architect Arthur Benton to design a new sanctuary building in 1913 and converted the original church into the parish hall. Church of the Epiphany witnessed the transformation of the Lincoln Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles from a predominantly white neighborhood to a community of largely Mexican immigrants and Latinx people. In the 1960s, the church basement became a hub of Latinx activism, and Cesar Chavez spoke in the parish hall.\

Church of the Epiphany continues to serve as a center for the celebration of Mexican and Latin American cultures. Currently the church distributes meals to low-income families and houses partner organizations offering free legal services to the local immigrant and refugee communities. The congregation actively supports the LGBTQ community and has partnered with the Wall Las Memorias Project since the 1990s to advocate for the creation of the first national monument to Latinx individuals who died from AIDS.

A $250,000 National Fund grant allowed Church of the Epiphany to enhance its functionality, capacity, and safety. The church also leveraged its community and built new connections with Southern California foundations to raise $850,000 in matching funds. Through this capital campaign, Church of the Epiphany installed new HVAC and electrical systems in the parish hall and replaced the roof on both of its buildings. The work furthered usage of the sanctuary building’s basement as a community gathering space by renovating the walls and floors, configuring a large meeting room and office, installing a new accessible bathroom and lift, and adding egress lighting. According to Church of the Epiphany, “None of this would have been possible without the initial granting of funds from the National Trust.”

 

Church of the Epiphany Continues to Give Voice to Its Community

While the church is celebrated in the city for its architectural styles, its connection to the city’s Chicano Movement in the mid-to late-20th century has made it a socially and politically important icon.

Church of the Epiphany by the National Trust for Historic Preservation

Stories and Media Coverage

Read more about how the National Fund for Sacred Places is helping congregations around the country rehabilitate their sacred places.

Lafayette Avenue Presbyterian Church by Luis P. Gutierrez