Established in 1914, Saint Spyridon Greek Orthodox Cathedral is a center for spiritual worship to over 6,000 people in the Worcester area. Its current structure, consecrated on May 3, 1925, is designed with a Byzantine style influence. Following in the Greek Orthodox Christian tradition, the nave’s decorative program includes icons, murals and stained glass windows depicting the life of Jesus Christ and saints of the Greek Orthodox Church. The Cathedral is named after St. Spyridon (270-348), a simple farmer who would become a bishop, known for his unrelenting selflessness and his dedication to Christ and the Church. Saint Spyridon Cathedral is proud of its many ministries, from its emergency food assistance program to its education programs to its annual Grecian Festival, which serve both the parish and the greater Worcester community.
Built in 1704 and expanded in 1745, the Saylesville Meetinghouse has been in continuous use as a gathering place for the Quakers for over 300 years. The modest design of the meetinghouse emulates the 18th century Quakers’ mandate for simplicity and plainness—allowing for clarity in purpose and desire so that one may “Walk cheerfully over the earth answering that of God in every person”.
Officially formed on October 23, 1960, St. Catherine Greek Orthodox Church grew out of a need to serve the growing Greek Orthodox population in the southern and western parts of Boston. Its current brick Byzantine style structure, completed in 2008, includes a church, school and community center. Named after St. Catherine, who is known for her deep-rooted faith in Christianity and a noted scholar of the arts and sciences, the church upholds Greek Orthodox tradition with its design principles and decorative program.
With roots dating back to 1791, Trinity United Methodist Church in Springfield, Massachusetts considers itself a “Community Cathedral” dedicated to worship, learning and recreation. Completed in 1929, its current structure is built in the Gothic Revival style, designed by Boston firm Allen and Collens. The Church takes great pride in its stained glass windows, which are designed by Wilbur Herbert Burnham (1887-1974) of Boston. Of particular note is the Rose Window, located at the rear of the nave, presenting Burnham’s interpretation of Psalm 150, which encourages people to rejoice in God with music and dance. At the center of the window, a cross and crown of Christ are depicted to symbolize victory through sacrifice. With this in mind, it is not surprising that the Church’s mission is to “celebrate God’s love, nurture relationships with God and one another, and serve our community and world as we share the light of Christ”.
The roots of the Providence Friends Meeting leads back to the summer of 1657 when The Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) arrived into the harbor of Newport, Rhode Island. While Quakers do not believe that meeting for worship necessarily requires a special place, Providence Monthly Meeting was established in 1718 and due to the growth of the Quaker community in the area, a meeting house was established. Its current building, completed in 1953, reflects the philosophy of a Quaker Meeting House with its absence of liturgical symbols and simplicity of design. While it should be noted that the Quakers were not initially welcomed in Rhode Island, they did not face the persecutions that occurred in the neighboring state of Massachusetts. It is with great reverence that the Providence Monthly Meeting congregation firmly believes that, “In keeping with our belief that there is that of God in every person, Providence Monthly Meeting welcomes all persons regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity, race or color, national or ethnic origin, sex, age, or disability”.
Organized in 1908, Saint George Cathedral is the first Albanian Orthodox Church in the United States and the largest Orthodox Christian house of worship in the state of Massachusetts. First established in response to the growing local Albanian community who began immigrating to the Boston area in 1886, its current structure was built in 1872 and designed by Boston architect Samuel J.F. Thayer in the Gothic Revival style to originally house the Second Hawes Congregational Church. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the building was obtained in 1949 by the Albanian Orthodox Archdiocese of the Orthodox Church in America. Now comprised of worshippers from diverse origins and backgrounds, the parish continues its mission to “address contemporary issues at home and in society to find personal salvation in the Living God”.
Founded in 2009, the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center is a mosque and community center located in the heart of Roxbury. Drawing over 1,500 worshipers from over 64 ethnicities for its Friday prayer services, the ISBCC’s mission is to teach and to live Islam in America. Under the leadership of its senior Imam, all of the mosque’s programming is executed through the prism of the “Four Prophetic Spheres” of Knowledge, Lived Spirituality, Community, and Service.
Formed in 1851, the Cathedral Church of St. Luke was chosen to be the cathedral church for the Episcopal Diocese of Maine in 1866. Its current structure, built in the Gothic Revival style, was designed by Charles Coolidge Haight and completed in 1868. The sanctuary, with its quintessential Gothic Revival elements such as vaulted ceilings and high pointed arches throughout, reflects the philosophical thought associated with Anglo-Catholicism. The parish is particularly fond of the following sanctuary components: the Wright Memorial Rose Window Array (1898) installed above the altar and attributed to the Whitefriars Glass Company; the Incarnation Reredos & High Altar Assembly (1925), designed by Ralph Adams Cram and sculpted by Ernest G. Pellegrini; and the Cathedral’s organ which was designed by Ernest M. Skinner and installed in 1925. Following in the path of modern Episcopalianism, the Cathedral Church of St. Luke’s mission is “to restore all people to unity with God and each other in Jesus Christ.”
Founded in 1869, the Cathedral of Saint Paul has served as the mother church of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Worcester since 1950, when the Diocese was established in the city. Its current grand structure, built in the Gothic Revival style, was designed by Elbridge Boyden & Son and completed in 1874. Important events within Saint Paul’s life are narrated within ten monumental stained glass windows located in the sanctuary and nave. The Cathedral of Saint Paul was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.
Gathered in 1785, the First Unitarian Church of Worcester, Massachusetts was formed by a group of 54 “free thinkers” who left Worcester-based First Parish Church under the leadership of their pastor, Dr. Aaron Bancroft, in a quest to celebrate freedom of belief and religious expression that would help define Unitarian doctrine in the United States. The Church’s current Federal style structure, built in 1850, was designed by Sidney Mason Stone and was inspired by the Center Church on-the-Green in New Haven, Connecticut. Following in the footsteps of its founders, the First Unitarian Church continues, “to preserve the freedom of each of us to determine for ourselves what we believe and how we should live. We are open to the wisdom of world religions. We welcome and honor diversity of belief, culture, lifestyle, and political view as a source of strength.”