Metropolitan AME Church, the oldest Black-owned property in the District of Columbia, needs your help. The historic church, located on M Street NW, between 15th and 16th Streets, is competing with 23 other sites in the Washington, D.C area to win a preservation grant. The grant funds are needed to restore the church’s famed stained-glass windows, members said.

The community, neighbors and friends are invited to attend an open house, entitled “American Struggles Stained in Glass,” on May 4 and 5 at the church. Participants will learn about the history of the church and the windows, then be invited to vote via social media outlets Facebook, Twitter, Four Square and Instagram for Metropolitan to win the preservation grant. The contest runs through May 10.

Metropolitan A.M.E. was chosen to compete in the Partners in Preservation program by the National Trust for Historic Preservation and American Express. The initiative will award $1 million in preservation grants to historic facilities in Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia.

As one of 24 historic buildings selected, Metropolitan is now competing to win a grant of up to $100,000. But as of May 1, it was in 13th place in the field of 24. The top three spots were held by Washington National Cathedral, Mt. Vernon and Sixth and I Historic Synagogue, according to the website.

For full details on voting and earning points for Metropolitan, go to or call the church at 202-331-1426.

Partners in Preservation is a program in which American Express, in partnership with the National Trust for Historic Preservation, awards preservation grants to historic places across the country. Since 2006, American Express has made grants worth $9 million through Partners in Preservation, helping historic places in seven cities to date, including San Francisco, Chicago, New Orleans, Boston, Seattle, Saint Paul/Minneapolis and New York, and has engaged more than a million people. The program will award an additional $1 million in grants to historic places in Washington, D.C. in May 2013.

Through this partnership, American Express and the National Trust for Historic Preservation seek to increase the public’s awareness of the importance of historic preservation in the United States and to preserve America’s historic and cultural places. The program also hopes to inspire long-term support from local citizens for the historic places at the heart of their communities.