New York Architecture Images- Midtown

SS Cyril & Methodius and St Raphael 




502 West 41st St










Special thanks to (British and international church architecture site) for generous permission to use images and info.
  The parish was founded in 1886 but the present building opened in 1914 
as St Raphael's church, close to 10th Avenue. Originally used by the 
Irish, construction of the Lincoln tunnel approaches in the 1930s saw 
much of this population move away. Italian Franciscan friars took over 
the church as a large Italian population moved into the "West 40s". 
This population too moved away to the suburbs and the Croatians moved 
here from West 50th St in 1974. They set about renovating the 
"dilapidated and neglected" church which was reopened in 1977 and 
serves Croatian families from the whole of NYC. 
The church is cruciform, although the nave and especially the chancel 
are rather short. Lower narrower five-sided apsidal sanctuary. The west 
(actual north) front is distinguished by two towers, both with similar 
features but the north tower bigger and higher. Spires recessed behind 
panelled parapets. These towers nd the facade are of grey stone with 
lighter stone dressings. The rest of the church is of red brick with 
stone dressings. 

For my first Manhattan church, I sadly found it locked. The church is 
rather islolated among the approach roads to the Lincoln Tunnel and the 
Port Authority's Bus Terminal. To the east of the church is the 
adjoining Croatian Centre