The Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament
About The Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in a Nutshell
Located at Christchurch’s city center, the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament is known as the mother church of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Christchurch.
Its Exceptional Design and Architecture
Because of its splendid architecture, it is deemed the best renaissance-style building in the whole of New Zealand. It is said that instead of going with the 19th-century Gothic, Petre, its architect, thought of using the Renaissance- Italian basilica style architecture as the basis of his design, but he made one major exception. He ignored the Renaissance conventions and instead of setting the Italianate green copper-roofed dome above the cross section of the church, he placed it directly above the sanctuary. This change helped Petre in obtaining a much greater visual impact.
As per history, the Cathedral’s foundation stone was laid sometime in 1901 and reportedly the building was completed in four years. However, history records convey that at the place where the Cathedral was being constructed, there used to be a small wooden chapel. It was the first of its kind in the region and was erected on a water-logged section in the October of 1860.
Forty-five years later, virtually on the same site, the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament was erected.
The Miracle Statue of Virgin Mary
In 2011, during the earthquake, the statue of the Virgin Mary in the Catholic Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, reportedly spun by an angle of 180 degrees such that instead of facing the insides of the Cathedral and her back to the window she was facing it. From then, she has been called as the miracle statue of Our Lady; no one will ever forget her out stretched arms facing the city as if protecting the city in front of her. The statue was recently removed from the Cathedral to be repaired.
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