John T. Comès was probably Pittsburgh’s most prolific architect of Catholic churches—a record made all the more remarkable by the fact that he died at the age of 49. His favorite style was Romanesque, and in the out-of-the-way back streets of Etna we find this masterpiece, built in 1914, that shows him at the peak of his creative power. It has all of Comès’ quirks. Unlike many other American architects who worked in the Romanesque style, he enthusiastically embraced the almost gaudy polychrome stripes and patterns typical of medieval Romanesque masterpieces. The bells in their cutout arches also seem like a thoroughly Comès detail.
With the light from the wrong angle, this composite picture of the front was about the best old Pa Pitt could do.