As the Bahá'í Faith began to take root in North America in the early years of the twentieth century, a group of mostly American Bahá'ís decided it was about time for the new and rapidly growing religion to have a proper temple in the New World. The cornerstone was laid by Abdu’l-Baha in 1912, but it would take another four decades to finance, build and finish the House of Worship for the Americas, in Willmette, Illinois.
A comprehensive history of this stunning piece of architecture is available at the link above. For today's purposes, I will simply let the building speak for itself.
The intricate details of the temple's stunning white exterior are cast in concrete and clad with quartz. Anyone who grew up with any of the major world religions will find familiar symbolism in the buttresses and arches of the House of Worship.
The temple is open to all, year-round. To get there, take Lake Avenue east from I-94 (exit 34C if heading north, 34A to Skokie, then left on Lake if heading south). Keep going straight on Lake across the train tracks, then hang a right on Sheridan and it should be impossible to miss. Willmette's a real maze to navigate, and if you come at it from any other angle, you'll probably go in circles a few times. Map: https://maps.google.ca/maps?q=42.074451,-87.684333&sll=49.891235,-97.153...