Friday, August 21, 2015

The Saint Boniface Cathedral

I have seen this "circle" from my hotel room ever since my first visit to Winnipeg.  And, I have long wondered what it was.  I found out on my walk!

It is the Saint Boniface Cathedral.  More specifically, it is the facade of the first Saint Boniface Cathedral.  From Wiki:

19th-century origins

The first church on the site was founded by Fr. Norbert Provencher, a priest and future bishop, who ordered its construction in 1818 in the form of a small log chapel. In 1832 Bishop Provencher built the first cathedral but on December 14, 1860, a fire destroyed the first building. In 1862, Bishop Alexandre Antonin Taché rebuilt the cathedral in stone.

20th century rebuilding

By 1900, St. Boniface was the fifth largest city in the West and needed a larger cathedral. Local contractors Senecal and Smith were engaged to build a new cathedral to plans by Montreal architect Jean-Omer Marchand. On August 15, 1906, Monsignor Louis-Philippe Adélard Langevin dedicated the cathedral, which became one of the most imposing churches in Western Canada.[1]
On July 22, 1968, the 1906 cathedral was damaged in a fire, destroying many features including the rose window. Only the facade, sacristy, and the walls of the old church remained.
In 1972, a new smaller cathedral, designed by Étienne Gaboury and Denis Lussier, was built behind the 1906 façade.[1]
The Institute for stained glass in Canada has documented the stained glass at St Boniface Cathedral.[2]

The newer cathedral is in the background.

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