Old Saint Mary Parish and the city of Milwaukee were minted in the same year: 1846. It’s a medium-sized church that is loaded with beauty, from the high altar to its stained glass windows. The stunning depiction of the Annunciation in the sanctuary reredos is the finest artistic gem of the church. Painted by Franz Xaver Glink, it was donated to the parish by King Ludwig I of Bavaria in 1848.

The Stations of the Cross are just as striking. Christ’s serene and sorrowful expression throughout the journey draws you in to contemplate his passion. Vivid blues and reds call to mind his two natures: divine and human. According to the parish’s informative website, “The Stations of the Cross, also painted in Munich, was the gift of the parish Saint John Young Men’s Sodality.” A few are missing here, but you’ll get a taste for the quality and hopefully visit the historic church soon.