Saturday, October 4, 2014

inSPIREd Sunday

September 2014 - Montreal Quebec

I grew up in Montreal and loved wandering around town visiting the sights. A favourite, and no wonder, was Notre Dame Cathedral on Place D'Armes across from the main branch of the Bank of Montreal which would end up playing a huge role in our working lives.

All the "technical" details are from Wikipedia.

In 1657, the Roman Catholic Sulpician Order arrived in Ville-Marie, now known as Montreal; six years later the seigneury of the island was vested in them. They ruled until 1840. The parish they founded was dedicated to the Holy Name of Mary, and the parish church of Notre-Dame was built on the site in 1672.

By 1824 the congregation had completely outgrown the church, and James O'Donnell, an Irish-American Anglican from New York, was commissioned to design the new building. O'Donnell was a proponent of the Gothic Revival architectural movement, and designed the church as such. He is the only person buried in the church's crypt. O'Donnell converted to Roman Catholicism on his deathbed perhaps due to the realization that he might not be allowed to be buried in his church.

Notre-Dame Church was raised to the status of basilica by Pope John Paul II during a visit to the city on April 21, 1982. The Notre-Dame Roman Catholic Church was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1989. The Gothic Revival style Basilica is a Montréal landmark, 1823-29.

On May 31, 2000 the provincial state funeral for former Montreal Canadiens superstar Maurice "Rocket" Richard was held in front of thousands, both inside and outside the Basilica.

On October 3, 2000 Justin Trudeau gave his eulogy just steps from the High Altar during the state funeral of Pierre Trudeau, his father and Canada's 15th prime minister.

It was also the setting of Celine Dion's December 17, 1994 wedding to René Angélil.

The church's Gothic Revival architecture is among the most dramatic in the world; its interior is grand and colourful, its ceiling is coloured deep blue and decorated with golden stars, and the rest of the sanctuary is a polychrome of blues, azures, reds, purples, silver, and gold.

 It is filled with hundreds of intricate wooden carvings and several religious statues. 

Unusual for a church, the stained glass windows along the walls of the sanctuary do not depict biblical scenes, but rather scenes from the religious history of Montreal.

 t also has a Casavant Frères pipe organ, dated 1891, which comprises four keyboards, 92 stops using electropneumatic action and an adjustable combination system, 7000 individual pipes and a pedal board.



  1. A very beautiful and impressive church!

  2. Magnificent shots of an incredible church!

  3. Wow! Amazing structure...outside and inside.

  4. Good grief - that's something! I think 'dramatic' is a tiny bit of an understatement.


This blog does not allow anonymous comments.