Update: The Preservation Board voted to demolish the church for a new Ronald McDonald House on October 25, 2022. Despite some reports that the church sat vacant for years, neighbors and members stated that the building was occupied by a congregation up until its purchase in 2018.
I’m afraid this little church’s days may be numbered at the northeast corner of Tower Grove and Chouteau avenues, as there will be a new development going on this block that will encompass this property. The former Emmaus German Evangelisch Church was founded in 1896, and this building apparently opened the next year. It closed in 1976 as the area declined. I always admired this little guy, and thought it would make a perfect life/work space for an architect and their family, or some other use. It’s a big piece of land that has probably never been subdivided. It will be gone soon, apparently.
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In 1929, the Evangelical congregation reported having a bell. After that congregation closed, this became Emmaus Baptist Church.
It’s ashame that our nation does not covet our historical buildings and green spaces. Although McDonald’s has a good cause, and most likelikely needs a larger head quarters, could the architect included the Emmaus German Evangelical Lutheran Church in the building drawings, renovating to it’s purpose as a place where families could gather to worship in times of their difficulty? It also may have been repurposed as class rooms or a library, or individual cosy sitting rooms where families could gather privately to watch television, read, – as they would do in their own living rooms at home. It’s nice to have open gathering places but sometimes privacy is needed. Yes I know McDonald’s is building a head-quarters but their purpose is serving families, and keeping Emmaus German Evangelical Lutheran Church would be a great way to service families in the community and keep a historic building in tact.