Saturday, January 12, 2013

Our Lady of Good Counsel, Putnam Ave.




The parish of Our Lady of Good Counsel is located at 915 Putnam Avenue, Brooklyn NY 11221, telephone 718-443-7211.  The bishop has merged this parish with that of St. John the Baptist, a mile away on Lewis Avenue, and one pastor serves both churches. The above Mass schedule was photographed on Our Lady of Good Counsel church during January, 2013.
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The website of the combined parishes is linked here.  However, as the website still lists the parish school as open, other information, such as office hours, may also be out of date.  The elementary school closed a few years ago.  The diocesan website gives St. John the Baptist's phone number as 718-455-6864.


Along the north side of Putnam Avenue is the church, a garden (with a statue of Mary and an Ankh) and the parish office.  Behind the garden can be seen a parish building that faces Madison Street.






The above photos show the north side of Putnam Avenue.
The photos below show the south side of Madison Street, that is, behind the church.

At 800 Madison Street, a new corridor connects what appears to be two former elementary schools of the parish.  The building to the left (east) shows the date 1893.  I could not find a construction date on the building to the right. Presumably a convent was someplace here. Present use of the building is for some 70 apartments of "single room occupancy" with permanent tenants, possibly under the management of a division of Catholic Charities.



Any photo may be enlarged by clicking on it.


The property of this parish lies mid-block between Ralph Avenue and Patchen Avenue, named after Ralph Patchen, a farmer who owned 150 acres closer to the waterfront in the early 1800's.

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10 comments:

  1. I attended the boy's school on the left and my wife attended the girl's school on the right. The church on Putnam AV is between the rectory building and a yard that previously held a convent for the Sisters of St Joseph. The building to the right of the rectory was a friary for the Franciscan brothers that taught at the boy's school.

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  2. Howard Madden is correct I went to the school in the late 60's early 70's along with three of sisters. The church, the school, this parrish was beautiful and a focal part of the community, my parents were very involved in the church, we had weddings there and the different sacrements. Just looking at these photos brings back memories I still remember the school yard that used to be between the two school buildings. Our family was very involved and I loved this church very much. So sad to know the schools are no longer open and that the church is not a single entity on it's own for the community.

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    1. The youth of Our Lady of Good Counsel along with many other groups in the church are little but surely bringing back the spark that was once OUR LADY OF GOOD COUNSEL

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  3. I just found my mother's graduation certificate from June, 1941. Sister M. Rosalita was the principal and Rev. Msgr. J. McEnroe was the Rector. Mom's name was Elizabeth Catherine Skelly.

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  4. What order of nuns taught at Our Lady of Good Counsel in the 1920s?

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  5. The school yard mentioned by Howard and Lisa was a combination basketball court and handball court (do they still play handball in NY?) that separated the boys school (red brick building) from the girls school (white limestone building) which was probably built many years later. If I'm not wrong, the boys school original name was: Our Lady of Good Counsel Boys Academy. I graduated in 1967-68 and went to school with Howard and his brother Eddie, I also remember "los Arizmendi's" since my parents were also very involved with parish activities. As Lisa says, the church was beautiful with stained glass windows, marble altar and a balcony with an old fashion pipe organ. The only religious orders that I new in Good Counsel were the Sisters of St. Joseph and the Franciscan Brothers. The priests might have belong to a different order...Howard should know that. (Victor Rodriguez-hijo de Doña Meri y Don Victor).

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  6. My Dad, James F. Dinsmore, graduated (at age 14) from the Boys' School of Our Lady of Good Counsel on January 31, 1923. The Principal at that time was the Rev. Brother Anthelm and the Superintendent was the Rt. Rev. Henry M. Hald. The school and the church were the centers of much activity at that time and several of our family members had their Requiem Masses held at the church prior to their internment at Holy Cross Cemetery and/or Calvary Cemetery.

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  7. My uncle, the Rev.Oswald Vincent Devany, served at Our Lady of Good Counsel from 1944 until his death in 1958. Any memories?

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  8. Such wonderful memories attended OLGC late 60s early 70s. So sad to hear it is no longer a school. Sister Mary David was the school Principle . So much discipline then. The school yard recess was the best. First bell rings, you freeze, second bell, go on your line. too many memories.

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  9. I am the current pastor of the Churches of Saint John the Baptist and Our Lady of Good Counsel. Thank you for sharing this article and all the memories. We continue to try the community of Bed-Stuy with great zael. God bless!

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