Tuesday, June 16, 2009

News Release: Vatican Designates Cathedral of Saint Paul as National Shrine

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Carolyn Will – 612-414-9661
- or- Dennis B. McGrath – 651-291-4412

Vatican Designates Cathedral of Saint Paul as National Shrine

(St. Paul, MN) June 16, 2009--The Vatican has designated the Cathedral of Saint Paul to be the first national shrine in honor of the Apostle Paul. This special distinction was granted by the Office of the Holy See and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, following a request by The Most Rev. John C. Nienstedt, Archbishop of Saint Paul and Minneapolis.

This will be the first national shrine in the State of Minnesota and the only national shrine in North America dedicated to honor Saint Paul.

According to canon (church) law, “The term shrine signifies a church or other sacred place to which the faithful make pilgrimages for a particular pious reason with the approval of the local ordinary (bishop).”

Tens of thousands of people, particularly tourists, already visit the Cathedral of Saint Paul every year. Bus loads of children also come to learn about the role of the Mother Church of the Archdiocese. The number of visitors is expected to increase significantly as a result of this designation as a national shrine dedicated to Saint Paul.

Over the decades, the Cathedral developed as a catechism in stone and glass by evangelizing through its grandeur and beauty. The patron Saint Paul is particularly honored through a series of bronze grills that depict major events in his life, from his conversion to his martyrdom. The Shrine of the Nations, which features patron saints of ethnic groups from Europe who settled the area, serves as a reminder that the work of the Apostle to the Gentiles continues through every age.

Considered one of the top five cathedrals in America, the cornerstone for the Cathedral of Saint Paul was laid over a century ago and it opened for worship on March 28, 1915. Actually the fourth Cathedral of the then young Archdiocese, it owes its existence to the vision of Archbishop John Ireland and the architectural genius of Frenchman E. I. Masqueray. It was paid for, in part, with the pennies of school children and the small contributions of the city's ordinary citizens.

To view or download photos of the Cathedral, go to www.cathedralsaintpaul.org/album
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Cathedral Heritage Foundation

The foundation is a secular, community-based effort to address the restoration and preservation of the Cathedral building for generations to come. To learn more about the foundation and how you can participate in the preservation of this great monument, contact:

Cathedral Heritage Foundation
239 Selby Avenue
Saint Paul, Minnesota 55102
Phone 651-228-1766 Fax 651-228-9942
National Shrine and Cathedral of Saint Paul
www.cathedralsaintpaul/cathedral-heritage-foundation


For information about the National Shrine of the Apostle of Saint Paul and the Cathedral of Saint Paul, contact:

National Shrine of the Apostle of Saint Paul
Cathedral of Saint Paul
239 Selby Avenue
Saint Paul, Minnesota 55102
Phone 651-228-1766 Fax 651-228-9942
www.cathedralsaintpaul.org

Guided tours are given every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 1 p.m. or by appointment. To schedule a tour, email: tours@cathedralsaintpaul.org. The public is also invited to visit the Cathedral Museum and Gift Shop on the lower level.
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