Saint Mary's Basilica, Halifax
Construction of the original cathedral began in 1784 when laws forbidding Catholic worship in the region were repealed. The land was purchased and a wooden cathedral, then called Saint Peter's, was built. The current stone structure replaced the wooden building in 1820.
St. Mary's was expanded in 1869. The facade was changed into a Norman-Gothic architectural style designed by Patrick Keely. This was when the spire was added to the building. St. Mary's is noted for having the tallest granite spire in North America.
On 6 December 1917, a French cargo ship laden with high explosives, collided with the Norwegian vessel SS Imo outside of Halifax Harbor caused a massive explosion. The event is known as the Halifax Explosion. The interior of the cathedral suffered great damage during the explosion. Most of the cathedral's stained glass windows were shattered and some of the bells were cracked. Renovations have repaired the windows and restored the bells to their previous grandeur.
St. Mary's is open during mass times to those who wish to take part in worship. Weekday masses take place from Monday through Friday at 12:15 PM. Sunday masses are at 8 AM, 10:30 AM and 5 PM.
Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Halifax. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.
Saint Mary's Basilica on Map
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