Project 365 – Day 49: Christ Church Cathedral and Saint James Unites Church

Feb 18 2012

Ended up having a bit of a religious walkabout, visiting 2 landmark churches in the downtown core on rue Sainte Catherine.

The first stop was at Christ Church Cathedral, located above the Promenades Cathédrale underground shopping mall. The shot of the day was taken in an area set aside for meditating at the side of the altar.

Meditation area in Christ Church Cathedral

Meditation area in Christ Church Cathedral

Christ Church Cathedral is an Anglican Gothic Revival cathedral, classified as an historical monument by the government of Quebec on May 12, 1988. In 1999, it was designated a National Historic Site of Canada.

The original Christ Church was on Notre-Dame Street (built 1814) but was destroyed by fire in 1856.

The present cathedral was designed by British architect Frank Wills. Before construction began, Wills died, and Montreal architect, Thomas Seaton Scott was commissioned to carry out his design. It was completed in 1859 and consecrated in 1867.

Christ Church Cathedral

Christ Church Cathedral

In the 1980s, a real estate project was undertaken below the cathedral. The project consisted of a 34-floor skyscraper, Tour KPMG built north of the Cathedral, underground parking, and two levels of retail stores beneath the cathedral.

Christ Church Cathedral with KMPG tower

Christ Church Cathedral with KMPG tower

Christ Church Cathedral refected in the KMPG tower

Christ Church Cathedral refected in the KMPG tower

Inside the Christ Church Cathedral

Inside the Christ Church Cathedral

Inside the Christ Church Cathedral

Inside the Christ Church Cathedral

Inside the Christ Church Cathedral

Inside the Christ Church Cathedral

Inside the Christ Church Cathedral

Inside the Christ Church Cathedral

Inside the Christ Church Cathedral

Inside the Christ Church Cathedral

Inside the Christ Church Cathedral

Inside the Christ Church Cathedral

Inside the Christ Church Cathedral

Inside the Christ Church Cathedral

Just down the street is  Saint James United Church located between rue City Councillors and rue Saint Alexandre (opposite Future Shop).

Saint James United Church is a national historic site of Canada and a Quebec religious heritage building. It was built between 1887 and 1889 after the congregation decided to move from St. James Street, hence the name. At the time of construction, it was the largest Methodist church in Canada with seating for more than 2,000.

The exterior of the church is a Victorian neo-gothic image of a medieval French cathedral. The interior is designed in “the Akron auditorium plan” popular with North American Presbyterians, Baptists and Methodists in the late 19th century but unique in Montreal.

Commercial buildings were erected in front of the church in 1926 to provide extra income but were  demolished in 2006 and St. James church is once again visible from rue Sainte Catherine.

The church is currently undergoing renovation, so not great to photograph – as seen by scaffold and protective sheeting in the first shot.

Saint James United Church

Saint James United Church

Saint James United Church

Saint James United Church

Saint James United Church

Saint James United Church

Click on any image below to view in gallery format.

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Thanks for stopping by. Until next time.

– Martin

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  1. [...] noticed that Saint James United Church on rue Sainte Catherine has a wonderful stained glass window that is illuminated at night but [...]