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About the Cathedral of Saint Paul

The City of Saint Paul was known as the Pig’s Eye Settlement until in 1841, when the first Catholic priest in the area, Fr. Lucien Galtier, dedicated his log chapel on the bluff to Saint Paul, requesting that the settlement adopt the name as well. The Cathedral of Saint Paul is now a civic landmark and the mother church of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Paul and Minneapolis. Approximately 1,000 households name the Cathedral as their home parish. One of the finest examples of Beaux Arts architecture, the Cathedral was designed by E. L. Masqueray. The cornerstone was laid on June 2, 1907. The first liturgy was held on Palm Sunday, March 28, 1915. Work continued on the interior for decades. On October 14, 1958, it was consecrated by Archbishop William O'Brady, securing its place among the premier houses of worship in the United States. It was placed on the National Register of Historical Buildings in 1974.
 

About the Parish

The Cathedral of Saint Paul serves a multitude of purposes for Catholics throughout the community. It is a place of worship for its parishioners and the center of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis. But it is also a civic landmark and a place of respite and contemplation near a bustling downtown. It is the heart of a Catholic Community of Faith that reaches far beyond the walls of its majestic structure. The Cathedral is both a symbol of the larger Catholic Church and a vibrant parish community. It is, finally, a spiritual home for all.
 

About the Archdiocese

The Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis serves a 12-county area, containing over 200 parishes with approximately 825,000 Catholics. More than 400 priests and 1,400 religious sisters, brothers, and deacons serve in the parishes and other ministries. The Diocese of Saint Paul was established by the Vatican in 1850 and elevated to an Archdiocese in 1888. In 1966 the name was expanded to include Minneapolis.
 

Building and Architectural Facts

  • Exterior walls are Saint Cloud granite
  • Interior walls are American Travertine from Mankato, Minnesota
  • Height: 306.5 ft. Length: 307 ft. Width: 216 ft.
  • Seating capacity: 3,000
  • The seven bronze grilles surrounding the altar depict the human response to God's grace. Since the Cathedral is dedicated to Saint Paul, special recognition is given to him in the bronze masterpieces.
  • The chair in the sanctuary (the cathedra) denotes the Cathedral as the Archbishop's church.
  • The Shrine of the Nations surrounding the sanctuary represents the national patron saints of the people who settled this city and state.
  • The main walls of the Chapels are finished in Italian Botticino marble.
  • The Ernest Skinner organ was installed in the sanctuary in 1927 and the Aeolian-Skinner organ in the choir loft in 1963.
  • The east-facing window is the Resurrection window. The south rose window takes its theme from the Beatitudes and the north rose window depicts the eight North American Martyrs. These windows are the work of renowned stained glass artist Charles Connick.