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Ground Breaking

Catholics from throughout the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston gathered on Sunday, January 30, 2005, to witness and celebrate the start of construction on their new cathedral.  A colorful, prayer-filled groundbreaking ceremony was held on the site of the new structure that will change the face of the south side of Downtown Houston.

The solemn blessing began in the sanctuary of the existing Sacred Heart Co-Cathedral at 1111 Pierce Street.   Archbishop Joseph A. Fiorenza was joined by Coadjutor Archbishop Daniel DiNardo and Auxiliary Bishops Vincent Rizzotto and Joe Vasquez in leading a procession of clergy and faithful across the street to the site of the new cathedral.  Songs of joy, the formal blessing of the ground and a ceremonial groundbreaking were then held on the construction site.

The proposed 1,820 seat structure will be located in the middle of three blocks bounded by San Jacinto and Fannin Streets on the east and west, Jefferson Street to the north and St. Joseph Parkway to the South.  City planners expect the new 40 million dollar cathedral to be an integral part of the Main Street Project and the continued development in Downtown Houston.  The new cathedral will be of a classic design and will feature a majestic domed roof over the altar and a 140 foot campanile (bell tower)

According to Archbishop Fiorenza, “Today we celebrate the generosity and love of our people who have worked together to bring us to this point in our history.  This new cathedral is important to our archdiocesan family in that it will provide us with a much needed central place of worship for major religious events.”  The new structure will serve the 1.3 million Catholics in the 10-county area that comprise the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston.  The archbishop added that he hopes the new cathedral will also serve for large ecumenical and interfaith programs, as well as for civic events that serve the entire community.

Construction is expected to be completed by spring 2007.  Ziegler-Cooper Architects of Houston designed the new cathedral.  Linbeck Construction Corporation of Houston has been selected as the general contractor.

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