Famous Churches – St. Christopher’s Cathedral, Canberra, Australia


St. Christopher’s Cathedral, Canberra, Australia

The Archdiocese of Canberra and Goulburn evolved from the Diocese of Goulburn, which was itself created on 17 November 1862. It covered the area between the Lachlan and Murray rivers. Archbishop Norman Gilroy of Sydney laid the foundation stone of St. Christopher’s Cathedral on 8 May 1938. The ceremony was attended by Prime Minister Joseph Lyons and former Prime Minister James Scullin. On 4 June, 1939, the parish church of St. Christopher was opened by Archbishop Panico, the Apostolic Delegate. The architect for the Spanish Romanesque style Church was Clement Glancy of Sydney. The builder was Warren McDonald, based in Canberra. Archbishop Eris O’Brien, took up residence in Canberra in 1955, so St. Christopher’s became the permanent seat for the Archbishop, and was called a Co-Cathedral, along with St. Peter and Paul’s Cathedral, Goulburn. In March 1972, the extension of St. Christopher’s to double its seating capacity and to provide adequate liturgical space. St. Christopher’s Cathedral claims the distinction of having four prime ministers as parishioners. On 4 June, 1939, the parish church of St. Christopher was opened by Archbishop Panico, the Apostolic Delegate.

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