St Patrick, Joliet, Illinois
St Patrick’s Catholic Church
710 W. Marion Street
The church is open; part of two Mallin murals remain in the altar
St Patrick’s Catholic church was the first parish established in the Joliet Diocese in 1838. The town of Joliet is located approximately 45 miles southwest of Chicago. Many immigrant families moved to Joliet when the I and M canal was built in the 1830s, including many from Ireland. The Rev. John Francis Plunkett was an Irish immigrant who arrived in 1838 to administer to the canal workers dying from malaria. He established the first church on Broadway Street near the Canal. In 1918, a new church was erected on Marion Street, which still stands today.
John Mallin decorated the church for Msgr. Philip L. Kennedy, the church’s longest serving pastor, who served from 1917 to 1961. According to Mallin’s bank records, the church was decorated in 1943, based on two deposits of $2,000 each in that year from the church.
The church was renovated in 1962 and 1981, according to the 150th year anniversary booklet of the church. It was also renovated in the 1990s. The only remaining Mallin decorations are two murals on each side of the altar. However, these murals are not intact as compared to the original photos. Some of the floral decoration at the bottom of the murals were painted over. The Holy Family representation in the murals appears to be intact, but not all of the other decorations in the murals remain.
St Patrick’s Catholic Church Parish History. https://www.stpatsjoliet.com/91