Members of Black History in Action for Cambridgeport inside St. Augustine’s African-Orthodox Church. (Photo: Cambridgeport Neighborhood Association)

Black History in Action for Cambridgeport has been awarded a $110,000 matching grant for exterior restorations at St. Augustine’s African-Orthodox Cathedral, established in 1921 at 137 Allston St. The Massachusetts Cultural Council announced the grant Thursday to support the next phase of restoration of the church’s 1886 building: insulation, re-shingling, installation of an accessible ramp and restoration of the windows and original side entrance. The grant must be matched by other funds.

Representatives of St. Augustine’s, BHAC, the Cambridge Historical Commission and the Cambridgeport Neighborhood Association said they had been working toward this goal since the fall of 2018, when the commission awarded the first $100,000 grant to the church.

“I am elated! One hundred years after St. Augustine’s became the home of the African-Orthodox Church, it will get a new shell. What better way to celebrate its Centennial,” the church’s Rev. Kit Eccles said.

Information about St. Augustine’s history and restoration efforts and BHAC’s programs is at cambridgeport.org or bhacambridge.org, which can also accept donations to complement the Massachusetts Cultural Facilities Fund grant. Checks can also be made payable to“Cambridgeport Neighborhood Association” with “for St. A’s” in the subject line and mailed to CNA’s treasurer Cathie Zusy, 202 Hamilton St., Cambridge MA 02139. The CNA is the fiscal sponsor for BHAC; donations are tax deductible.

This post was written from a press release.

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