St. Joseph Church construction, 1960s (video)

St. Joseph Church, 2023 (SCHS)

Parishioners of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Springfield attended Mass in their new church for the first time on Thanksgiving Day 1967. The modernistic, in-the-round sanctuary was a break from tradition for the historic parish, which was founded in 1875.

Parishioner David Lazzeri (1920-2008) documented the construction process, from demolition of the old church to services in the new one, with his home-movie camera. For the 25th anniversary of the new church in 1993, the parish commissioned a narrated video taken from Lazzeri’s films. The 18-minute video was digitized and posted to YouTube in 2023.

Rev. Edward Gorman confers with David Lazzeri (St. Joseph Church)

In addition to the demolition and construction process, highlights of the video include views of the Gothic-style old church, film of a 1964 parish open house, and, especially, what the Rev. Edward Gorman (1910-95), whose vision the new church was, hoped the building would inspire.

The video was produced by parishioner Joe Adams with writing by Mike Kienzler* and narration by Larry Smith. St. Joseph Church is at 1345 N. Sixth St.

The YouTube video can be seen here. (Narration begins about 50 seconds into the video.)

*Kienzler edits SangamonLink.

Video property St. Joseph Parish, Springfield, Ill. Published on YouTube with permission.

Original content copyright Sangamon County Historical Society. You are free to republish this content as long as credit is given to the Society. Learn how to support the Society. 

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2 Responses to St. Joseph Church construction, 1960s (video)

  1. Michael Allison says:

    My mother’s parish. Spiritual home of the Kaufman family that lived at 1301 North Third Street.

    • Phil Shadid says:

      Very nice video and story about St. Joseph’s. My wife and I are graduates of the grade school (different years). She graduated from Ursuline and I graduated from Lanphier (as one of my brother’s and three sisters did). We lived across the street from the Kaufman’s at 1308 N. 3rd. I remember the Kaufman’s. I think their daughter was Dorothy.

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