Posts Tagged ‘St. Louis IX’

Major restoration work at the Old Cathedral at the east end of Walnut Street across Memorial Drive. The Cathedral rests on the edge of the Arch Grounds. The exterior renovation consists of stone work–repairing, replacing, re-grouting, etc. Father Billings, pastor at the Cathedral, told me last week that they would be working on it into the fall of next year. The building, one of the oldest west of the Mississippi with a cornerstone dated 1831, deserves to be taken care of due to its architectural interest and its historical significance. Historically, it is the first Catholic Cathedral west of the Mississippi River.

Father Billings just drove by and we exchanged good-day wishes. I think I’ll step inside for a moment of spiritual reflection.

I enter and my attention is immediately focused on the altar. It is illumined by a wonderful round skylight above it. Not only is the alter bathed in light, but also a life-sized crucifix behind the altar is lit gathering my attention. I am overwhelmed at the thought of Christ’s suffering, for me. Statuary on both sides of the chancel area and other locations are significant to this church. One is of Saint Louis IX. At the back of the worship area is a painting of St. Louis IX dated 1888(?) I have already forgotten the exact date, although I have a nagging suspicion that it was an earlier than this. The Cathedral is a wonderful space for private meditation/reflection and corporate/public worship. The interior of the church is also undergoing refurbishing. The end results should enhance the worship of God and the enrichment of one’s faith.

I walk out of the building and into life surrounding it observing Life’s Designs–men working on the netting-enshrouded building, traffic exiting Interstate-70 and coming to an abrupt stop at Walnut Street where vehicle occupants can gain a moment’s peace observing the Cathedral, people rushing to occupy their office space, young adult joggers entering or leaving the Arch Grounds focused on their health and intent on their schedule.