A major renovation of the Cathedral of St. Joseph has begun, with plans for completion and a rededication Mass in 2023.
“During this year, we vacate this Cathedral structure in order to take care of some needed repairs, to increase our hospitality to visitors and guests, and to manifest more clearly the beauty of our Catholic faith in the various pieces of artwork that are being fashioned by artists near and far away,” Bishop W. Shawn McKnight stated at the end of his homily on Jan. 2, 2022, the Solemnity of the Epiphany of Our Lord.
The approximately $15 million renovation and expansion addresses numerous mechanical and accessibility issues within the structure while greatly enhancing the cathedral’s hospitality and spiritual functionality. This includes the installation of new artwork and liturgical features that more fully reflect the beauty of our Catholic faith — as well as highlight the culture and rich history of our diocese.
This work is helping fulfill our diocese’s original vision for the cathedral, which has not had a substantial renovation since it opened in 1968.
The renovations are entirely funded by generous donors who have united in support of this project. Lay Catholics, deacons and priests have sent gifts directly in support of the renovation, going above their regular support for their own parishes. In addition, the cathedral parish has committed to fund the significant improvements to the undercroft. Thanks to these gifts, this project is moving forward without any assessments to the other parishes of our diocese.
The cathedral work comes at a time when the diocese — thanks to gifts from our generous Catholic community — is also making significant investments to expand our charitable outreach and support the work of our Catholic education system.
All Catholics in the Diocese of Jefferson City, as they continue to support their local parishes, are invited to contribute to the ongoing maintenance of the cathedral. We also invite everyone to join us in prayer for the safety of the many skilled artisans who are renewing this spiritual home for our diocese.
The Cathedral of St. Joseph belongs to all Catholics in our diocese. All are also strongly encouraged to join us in Jefferson City to see the Cathedral of St. Joseph when it reopens in 2023. Watch for information about the reopening and rededication early next year.
Our diocesan newspaper, The Catholic Missourian, continues to tell the story of the work of the renovation:
Bishop Shawn McKnight, Father Louis Nelen, rector of the Cathedral, and Bill Heyer, architect, visited the Progetto Arte Poli studios, where they met with the artists and saw the works of art being created for the Cathedral.