Special dedication of Co-Cathedral today

April 2, 2008 12:47:18 PM PDT
It's a historic day for the Houston area Catholics. After years of preparation, the downtown co-cathedral was finally opened with a special ceremony. After years of hard work, a day Catholics here in the Houston area have been waiting for has arrived. The new co-cathedral downtown was dedicated in an elaborate ceremony.

FULL COVERAGE: Go inside the new co-cathedral
VIDEO: Video coverage of the co-cathedral
PHOTOS: Historic Dedication

Inside you will find $9 million worth of art. The two biggest sculptures are of Jesus "The Statue of the Sacred Heart" and Mary "The Immaculate Conception." They are 12 feet tall and weigh 13,000 pounds each.

They were carved from white Carrara marble, the same kind Michelangelo used to carve 'David.' It took 25 days to ship them to Houston by sea.

The design of the building is meant to be very simple. It seats just over 1,800 people, but with additional seating can squeeze in about 2,000.

"It's a magnificent church that praises God and I think it will be a church that perhaps enhances the devotion and the love for God," said Archbishop Emeritus Joseph Fiorenza.

"It's a building built in 2008 and we combine with the richness of tradition," said Father Troy Gately with the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart.

Today's dedication is by invitation only. Some of the music for the dedication was composed just for this service.

A procession of more than 600 deacons, priests, bishops and cardinals entered the cathedral. Cardinal Daniel Dinardo was presented with the keys, plans and documents at the door.

The service started around noon and several streets were blocked off. Jefferson and St. Joseph will be shut down at 9am between Fannin and Caroline. San Jacinto will close at 10:30am from Pierce to Pease.

The service lasted several hours and HPD hopes to re-open the streets just before the evening rush hour.

- Headlines at a glance


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