Saint Ann's Church


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Saint Ann's Church, October 2016

Photos by Christopher Byrd, The Buffalo History Museum, St. Ann's Parish, David Torke


651 Broadway, Buffalo NY 14212


Catholic Diocese of Buffalo

Chancery (Bishop's Office)

Most Reverend Richard J. Malone, Bishop of Buffalo
795 Main Street
Buffalo NY 14203
Phone: (716) 847-5500
Fax: (716) 847-5557

Office of Buildings & Properties

Michael Sullivan, Director
Phone: (716) 847-8750
Fax: (716) 847-8756

Physical Description

  • St. Ann's is one of Buffalo's finest examples of neo-gothic architecture.
  • It contains exquisite woodcarvings including a 32 foot high hand carved altar. The nave or central aisle is 38 feet wide. The height of the nave is 70 feet. The entire length of the church is 216 feet. The sanctuary is 74 feet wide and 30 feet deep. Seating capacity is 1,600. courtesy

Current Condition

  • Bishop Malone has announced plans to demolish the church, despite protest from its parishioners and conflicting repair cost estimates.
  • Its windows were covered with dense yellowed fiberglass sheets for protection in the 1970s.


Recent Events and Actions Taken

  • January 20, 2014 - The Vatican has sided with the parishioners and supports preservatio of the buildings. The decree states the church can't be used for a ďprofaneĒ (non-religious) use and any attempts to court a developer for rehabilitating the site for anything else will not be allowed.
  • January 20, 2014 - The Diocese of Buffalo disagrees with the Vatican's decision and will file an appeal with the highest juridical body within the Vatican.
  • November 6, 2013 - Buffalo's Common Council approves local landmark status application of St. Ann's
  • Mike Puma, August 28, 2013: "The Diocese of Buffalo and Preservation Buffalo Niagara (PBN) have engaged in a collaborative effort to find a reuse for the St. Annís Church Campus. Demolition of the iconic structure has been placed on hold as the two entities work together to find a buyer with an appropriate plan for the rehabilitation and redevelopment of the site. Selling is now officially an option back on the table."
  • MEETING called for Wednesday, August 21, 7pm. Location change: The meeting will be held in the hall at SS. Columba & Brigid Church, Eagle & Hickory Streets, 418 N. Division Street., Buffalo.
  • August 2013 - The Roman Catholic Diocese announced the building would be demolished - WKBW TV article.
  • June 2013 - Parishioners "received their own estimates that suggest the most pressing work to address safety concerns Ė mortar replacement, stone stabilization and other repairs on the two towers Ė could be done for less than $200,000." The Buffalo News
  • May 2013 - Structural analysis indicates the building needs $8.2 million - $12.4 million in repairs before the worship space could be available. Bishop Richard J. Malone has yet to decide on future steps to take with the church.
  • April 2012 - Diocese suspends activities at St. Ann's Church
  • 2012 - A parishioner appeal to the Vatican delayed the closure
  • 2011 - Bishop Edward U. Kmiec ordered it closed
  • August 2008 - 150 year anniversary
  • 2007-2012 - A committee at St. Ann's manages to fight off closure
  • 2007 - St. Annís parish was merged with SS. Columba & Brigid. St. Annís Church remained open as a ďtemporary worship siteĒ

Other Pertinent Facts

  • The church school was once the largest private school in the country with over 2,000 students Buffalo Rising
  • The 35 stained glass windows were created by German glass makers in Munich and were shipped to the US in 1889


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Added 2013-08-19 • Last changed 2018-08-15