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Cornerspotted: Basilica of Regina Pacis in Bensonhurst

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Only one person guessed on this week's Cornerspotter, but that person, commenter Karen1220, hit the nail right on the head when she wrote that the corner in question was occupied by the Regina Pacis church in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn.

The church was constructed starting in 1948, costing a whopping $2,000,000, with the money going to two thousand tons of Italian marble, sixteen stained glass windows, mosaics, and 150-foot steeple. It immediately got a lot of attention, but rose to a level of infamy in 1952 when the church's showpieces, a pair of 18-carat gold crowns made from jewelry donated by parishioners, were stolen. The story went national and people flocked to the church to pray for the crowns' safe return, which actually seemed to work, as the crowns were returned via the mail eight days later. It was, at the time, believed to be a miracle and the case remains unsolved, although there is a theory that a jewel thief with mafia ties was behind the theft and that he was murdered because stealing from the church was taboo for the mob.
· Regina Pacis and the Case of the Missing Crowns [Brooklynology]
· Cornerspotter archives [Curbed]