In-Depth: All Saints Chapel Celebration

RALEIGH, N.C.– It’s had 3 different homes over the last century, and next week, people across the Triangle will celebrate All Saints Chapel, and raise money to help preserve similar buildings in need of revitalization and care.

Raleigh’s historic All Saints Chapel will celebrate 10 years since its historic move that saved it from demolition on Thursday, June 30, with a party to benefit Preservation North Carolina.

The event is at All Saints from 5:00p.m.- 7:30 p.m. at 110 S. East St. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. All proceeds benefit Preservation NC, a nonprofit that protects and promotes the state’s diverse historic buildings and sites. Tickets are available by calling 919-832-3652 x 227.

For decades, All Saints was part of the Church of the Good Shepherd on Hillsborough Street in downtown Raleigh. After the congregation grew and needed a bigger church in the early 1900s, the chapel was moved around the corner to Morgan Street. In 2005, the congregation decided it needed more space for a parking lot and planned to raze the chapel if someone didn’t buy it before demolition day.

Greg Hatem, manager partner of Empire Properties, which has been restoring historic buildings in downtown Raleigh and Durham since 1996, caught wind of the possibility, and in the 11th hour, stepped in to save the chapel.

On June 18, 2006, the 70-foot-long, 40-foot-wide, 235,000-pound structure made its second move, this time a half mile east to the edge of historic Oakwood in downtown Raleigh. Hatem and his team held their breath, praying the historic structure was not damaged en-route. After the chapel was safely settled in its new location on South East Street, the second task began: looking at dozens of old photos of the chapel to ensure the team could restore it to its original glory, from ornate lighting fixtures to intricate wood trim.

After more than $1.5 million and countless man hours, the chapel was restored in 2008 to reflect the work of its original designer, Reverend Johannes Adam Simon Oertel, and the sanctuary looks like it did upon opening for its first service on Easter Sunday in 1875. With its wooden aisles leading to a gothic cross configuration, highlighted by five clerestory windows on either side of the five-bay nave, cathedral-like ceilings, stained-glass window and pointed arches, All Saints is an architectural treasure and one of the few Carpenter Gothic structures left of its kind.

All Saints now serves as an all-purpose events space, most frequently used as a wedding chapel. Since opening in 2008, the chapel has hosted more than 700 events, most of which have been weddings and receptions.

See photos and video…

(Time Warner Cable News, 6/20/2016)