Art & Architecture

As one approaches Richmond from any direction the 139-foot steeple can be seen on the horizon.  The present church was built in 1884, the fourth church building of the parish.  It is a classic German Gothic-style church with a single projecting tower centered on a facade.  Its exterior is made of red brick and has a distinctive metal clad roof with curved flared corner edges on the steeple.

Unlike most German Gothic-style churches, it does not have any pillars on the interior, leaving a large open space for the nave.   There is a large protruding choir loft with a Lorenz Trackere organ.  The church has no center aisle, but rather a large center section of pews with two outside rows of pews.  In total there are 110 pews, and the church seats up to 700.

The major interior feature is the series of framed oil paintings depicting the Stations of the Cross and arched stain glass windows.  The church interior is defined by decorative patterns painted on flat surfaces.  The ceiling is decorated by oil paintings of the Fourteen Holy Helpers (or Fourteen Auxiliary Saints) by Count Berthold John Von Imhoff.  The saints were called upon from the Middle Ages for intercession for everything from safe childbirth, to disease and fire prevention, to aid in the hour of death.  They would have had great meaning in the frontier history of the parish community.

Adjoining the church is a Gathering Space constructed and dedicated in 2013.  It was made with a matching red brick exterior and compliments the larger church building.  It has a large open area to host parish functions, basement classrooms and open space for faith formation, and the parish offices.

Across the street from the church is the parish school and parish center, completed in 1959, the fourth school building to occupy the parish property.   It has a large gym, cafeteria, seven classrooms, office space, and a library.

Behind the church is the parish rectory, built of the same red brick in 1898.

More details of the church interior can be found in The Art Treasures of Saints Peter and Paul by Robert Solinger.

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