October 2016 - Minneapolis MN
A stop before we get on the road to Madison on our way home.
The Basilica of Saint Mary replaced a previous church, the Church of the Immaculate Conception. It was originally built in 1871, located at 3rd Street and 3rd Avenue North, but the expanding warehouse district was engulfing the church property. Archbishop John Ireland announced plans for a new Church of the Immaculate Conception on Christmas Day, 1903. In 1905, Lawrence S. Donaldson donated a one-block parcel on Hennepin Avenue near Loring Park for the new church buildings.
Civic dedication of the church took place on November 4, 1913, and the church was informally opened on May 31, 1914. It was informally referred to as the Pro-Cathedral of the archdiocese from its beginning, but the parish was still officially named the Church of the Immaculate Conception until September 21, 1921. It was formally named the Pro Cathedral of Saint Mary at that time. Although the building was open for worship in 1914, the interior decoration, windows, and plaster work were not completed until 1925. It was established as a minor basilica by Pope Pius XI in 1926, making it the first basilica in the United States.
Darn, we'll be gone by then. Turns out a Facebook friend who lives in St. Paul's was at the 11AM service and then took her dog Wendy to be blessed.
Mass was taking place so we only stood in the entrance.