These places of worship survived devastating natural disasters, fires and tragedy and stand as monuments of faith and God’s protection. Here are a few amazing churches that withstood disaster.
Saint Paul's Chapel located just opposite the World Trade Center in New York City, served as a sanctuary after the attacks on September 11. It became a symbol of perseverance and hope, and later served as a memorial site to honor those lives lost in the tragedy. Built in 1766 and known as "The Little Chapel That Stood," Saint Paul's is the oldest church in Manhattan. Amazingly 9/11 wasn’t the first time Saint Paul's was protected from disaster, having survived the Great Fire of New York during the American Revolutionary War.
On Good Friday 1964, the largest earthquake on record in North America hit Old Harbor, Alaska. The quake and the tsunami that followed devastated the entire town. Only one structure, The Three Saints Russian Orthodox Church, survived. Today, residents describe the event as the Good Friday miracle.
Old Skagen Church in Denmark was built in the 14th century. For hundreds of years, the congregation struggled to keep the church free of sand from nearby dunes. In 1795, after repeatedly digging out the entrance to hold church services, the community decided it was an impossible feat and the church was abandoned. The tower still stands above the sand today.
The San Juan Parangaricutiro Church in Mexico survived 8 years of volcanic eruption. Thankfully, when disaster struck in 1943, the community was able to evacuate before the lava reached the town and no one was killed. Townspeople quickly began building a new church, the Nuevo San Juan Paragaricutiro, nearby. The old church blanketed by volcanic rock is a popular tourist attraction.
Old St. Patrick’s Church stands as the oldest public building in Chicago. During the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, the church was one of the few buildings unaffected. Miraculously, the path of fire missed the church by just two blocks.
In 1870, the community of Swan Quarter North Carolina hoped to build a church on a certain plot of land, but the land owner declined their offer to purchase the property, and the church was built on another site. Amazingly, soon thereafter, a hurricane struck and the church was plucked from its foundation and moved to the exact location where the community had originally hoped to build.
Explore the collection of slideshows and discover inspirational quotes, beautiful photos, and powerful stories of hope.