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Mother Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church, Philadelphia

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Contact: +1 215 925 0616
Open Hours: Sunday services 8a, 9a, 11a; tours during the week
Mother Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church is the first A.M.E. church in the world. It was founded by free American blacks in the 1700s. The current building was constructed in 1889 and occupies the same location as three previous structures. Stained glass windows feature masonic and religious themes and the shrine of the church contains the tomb of Bishop Allen, his wife Sarah and Bishop Morris Brown. Purchased by Richard Allen in 1791, this site is the oldest parcel of land continuously owned by African Americans. The Richard Allen Museum contains 19th century artifacts from the church. Traditionally, all other A.M.E. churches are designed along the plans of this building.