Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Cathedral of Saint Paul, Minnesota

The first cathedral in Saint Paul, Minnesota, was a log cabin used by Bishop Joseph Cretin in 1851. A second cathedral was built that year but was still too small. In 1858 the third cathedral was built and remained in use until 1914. Then the current cathedral was built in the classical revival style.

Side exterior view of St. Paul's Cathedral

The front

The building is reminiscent of European cathedrals both outside and inside.


The main part of the church has a large dome supported by four corner pillars, each of which has a niche for a statue of an evangelist.


St. Mark

St. Luke

The main altar has an impressive baldachino just like St. Peters in Rome.

View of the sanctuary

The main altar

The baldachino

The dome over the main altar

Cathedra (bishop's chair)

There are a few side altars, the largest two being the Chapel of the Blessed Virgin and the Chapel of Saint Joseph.

Chapel of the Blessed Virgin

Chapel of Saint Joseph

Chapel of the Sacred Heart

In the Founder's Chapel is a copy of Michaelangelo's Pieta.


The lower level has a museum (which was closed while we were visiting) and a few exhibits from the history of the cathedral.

Lintel from one of the earlier cathedrals

Bell used in the first three cathedrals

Archbishop John Ireland, who oversaw the construction of the current cathedral

A Lego version of the cathedral has been constructed and is displayed downstairs.

Lego Saint Paul's

Over the front entrance

We went out the front doors and discovered the cornerstone.


Us at the front entrance

It was a windy day

The back of the cathedral (the chapter house?)

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