Cardinal’s Welcome His Eminence, Timothy Cardinal Dolan Trustees of St. Patrick’s Cathedral Board of St. Patrick's Cathedral Landmark Foundation Restore St. Patrick's Cathedral
FAQ on the Restoration
The restoration of St. Patrick’s Cathedral was announced March 17th, 2012 by Timothy Cardinal Dolan, Archbishop of New York. In order to continue our service to Catholic and non-Catholic, young and old, rich and poor, we must repair and secure the structure of our beautiful cathedral.
Are you open?
St. Patrick’s Cathedral will continue to be open 365 days a year throughout the entire restoration process as we continue to offer 7 masses a day throughout the week, 3 masses on Saturdays, and 8 masses on Sundays; the sacrament of confession every day of the week except Sundays, and daily exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, Monday through Friday.
How long will the project last?
We began work in May of 2012 and our target end date is December 2015.
Is it safe?
We are in full compliance with the New York City Department of Buildings to ensure your safety during the restoration and have on-site safety managers. Please be attentive to our ushers and follow their direction regarding sections of the Cathedral that are closed to the public during the restoration.
Can we still get married at the Cathedral?
We have a long and beautiful tradition of weddings at St. Patrick’s of which we are very proud. During the restoration scaffolding will be erected in the interior, chiefly to clean the masonry and stained glass windows. Please note that at this point in the restoration weddings will not be held the Cathedral. Please check back for updates as the restoration continues.
Thank you for your patience as we undergo the restoration of this great New York landmark. To learn more about the project or contribute to it, please go here.
What can I do to help?
We are very grateful for your generous donations to both the Restoration and the Cathedral’s Annual Fund.
Learn more about donating to the restoration here.
And the Cathedral’s annual fund here.
You can also share our story with your friends and family by liking us on Facebook and following us on Twitter and Instagram.
There are sections closed when I go to the Cathedral, why? Where can I see progress of the restoration?
During the restoration interior sections will be opened and closed depending on the day, we apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your patience.
We invite you to look at the following areas that have been restored during this unique period of the Cathedral’s history:
The Bronze Doors: meticulously restored by G & L Popian, these 9, 200 pound doors had seen the wear and tear of more than 50 years of overlooking 5th Avenue. Walk out front now and see saints depicted on the fully-restored doors, shining for all to see.
Narthex ceiling: when you walk in look up. Darkened by soot, pollution and years of heavy traffic, the ceiling had turned black in some places and the plaster had cracked. The first section of the ceiling has now been cleaned, and meticulously repaired by artisans.
Exterior: as you approach the Cathedral (or leave) be sure to take a look behind you, the spires now gleam as they first did when they were finished in 1888. We cleaned and re-cut stones to return them to their original glory.
The Elizabeth Anne Seton altar is covered up, why is that?
St. Elizabeth Anne Seton, founder of the Sisters of Charity and renowned historic figure, is honored both on our front doors and at a side altar. Currently her altar is under restoration and following the work this location will remain a shrine to Mother Seton.
Where is morning Mass?
The 7:30, 8:00, 12:30pm and 1:00 Masses are now located in the Lady Chapel due to the restoration.
What is the cost?
The restoration will cost approximately $175 million.
Why is this important when there are so many other pressing needs in the New York City community?
In a nutshell: because without restoration St. Patrick’s Cathedral would eventually have deteriorated beyond repair.
When the scaffolding first went up in 2007, it was erected so that the pieces of stone that were falling from the building—ranging in size from tiny chips to chunks the size of a fist—would not strike passers-by. In addition to the exterior, stained glass windows and plaster ceiling needed repairing, the altars needed cleaning, the organ needed a full overhaul, the woodwork needed restoration, the lighting required upgrading, and the fire safety system needed to be improved.
St. Patrick’s Cathedral is a national landmark in the heart of New York City serving as a testament of faith and freedom and as such merits our greatest efforts.
In addition to the physical needs, it is important to remember that St. Patrick’s one of, if not the, most visited churches in America. It serves as one of the best opportunities in the country from which the Church can share the Gospel of Christ. Located in Midtown Manhattan, St. Patrick’s is important not because of its grandeur but because of the message she seeks to share: the eternal truth and love that is inherent to the Gospel.
The Cathedral is a reminder, right in the middle of a city known for power, money, and prestige, that the beauty, truth, and goodness flowing from God is what truly endures.
Who is working on the project?
The project’s architecture firm is Murphy Burnham and Buttrick, the general contractor is Structure Tone, and the owner’s representative is Zubatkin, LLC. In addition to these three firms, there are many subcontractors and vendors helping us in this historic restoration.
We are grateful for your prayers of support for all those working on the restoration.
How many people does it take to restore the Cathedral?
Including the St. Patrick’s Cathedral staff, the architecture team, the construction management team, the owner’s representatives and the Archdiocesan team, more than 200 people a day are working on this project.
Was it restored like this before?
The two main restorations of the Cathedral were in 1949 and 1973 but this is the most extensive and essential restoration the Cathedral has ever undergone.
Thank you for your help and interest in restoring America’s Parish Church. If you have any additional questions please message us on Facebook.