In 1844, the Archbishop of New York asked the Redemptorists—a Catholic missionary congregation—to take charge of the burgeoning population of German Catholics in Kleindeutschland. At first, they ministered from St. Nicholas’ on 2nd Street, but the number of German Catholics shot up so tremendously in the following two years that other arrangements had to be made—the building had become far too small to be functional.
In order to accommodate the throngs of German Catholics, the parish immediately moved to a temporary structure and ultimately constructed The Church of the Most Holy Redeemer at 173 East Third Street. This new building, completed in 1852, towers over the neighborhood, standing as both a physical and spiritual anchor for its parishioners.
During Kleindeutschland’s prime, The Church of the Most Holy Redeemer was the unofficial cathedral to the German Catholic community. As the community evolved however, it began moving uptown to Yorkville. This distinction—unofficial though it may be—was lost to St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church on East 87th Street.
Today, The Church of the Most Holy Redeemer continues to the serve the neighborhood, offering serves in both English and Spanish.