St. John the Baptist Slovak Church

St John the Baptist Slovak Catholic church was located on the south side of Chicago at 9129 S. Burley Ave.  The church was founded in 1909 to serve the needs of Slovak immigrants on Chicago’s southeast side.  The church building was purchased from a Protestant congregation and was supposed to be a temporary location, but it remained the only church that was used by the congregation.

It was a small church that seated 250.  It had a meeting hall beneath the church, and a rectory next door.  Many organizations and societies were affiliated with the parish but it never had a parish school.  In 1968 it was entirely renovated.   Even in 1980, the church continued to serve Slovak Catholics, including the elderly who were very loyal to the church even if they lived far from the church.

Mallin letter

The building closed in the early 1990s, and was purchased by Our Lady of Guadalupe church which was located nearby.  The church is still being used for the Head Start program of the Our Lady of Guadalupe church.

A letter to Rev. Andrew J. Marecak in 1918 from Mallin, indicates work to be done on the main altar and two side altars.  Three statues were also to be refinished.  The total cost was $530.  This was one of Mallin’s earliest work done through his own company, in addition to the work done at the Bohemian National Cemetery about the same time. No photos of the Mallin work from 1918 are known to exist.  


A History of the Parishes of the Archdiocese of Chicago Volume 1. Msgr. Harry C. Koenig, S.T.D., editor. The Archdiocese of Chicago, Chicago, 1980.

Project Name
St. John the Baptist Slovak Church

9129 S. Burley Avenue
Chicago, Illinois

Project Status
Church sold to Our Lady of Guadalupe Church; Mallin decorations gone

Project Date/s
Decoration date: 1918