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The Mass for the reopening of St Mary’s Cathedral Hobart last night (Hobart Archdiocese/Joshua Low)

St Mary’s Cathedral in Hobart has been officially reopened after extensive restoration work over the past five months. Source: Hobart Archdiocese.

Last night, on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a special Mass was celebrated to dedicate the new altar and bless the Cathedral.

“May this cathedral church be pre-eminently a place where God is worshipped and the grace of salvation flows forth upon the people who gather here and upon this island of Tasmania,” Archbishop Julian Porteous said during his homily.

Concelebrating the Mass with the Archbishop was Apostolic Nuncio to Australia Archbishop Charles Balvo, Hobart Archbishop Emeritus Adrian Doyle, cathedral administrator Fr Leonard Caldera, and Australian Catholic Bishops Conference general secretary Fr Stephen Hackett MSC. 

“Christians have always sought out the best artisans and artists to adorn their churches,” Archbishop Porteous said.

“I am indebted to the wonderful skilled artisans and artists who have contributed to this renovation of St Mary’s Cathedral.”

Made of Mount White sandstone, the new altar was a gift from the Porteous family in memory of the Archbishop’s deceased brother, Richard.

A first-class relic of St Therese of Lisieux, donated by the Hutchinson family in memory of the late Mrs Mary Hutchinson, was also installed into the altar. 

St Mary’s Cathedral was closed in early July to allow restoration work to commence. The entire interior of the cathedral was repainted and the vinyl flooring replaced with terrazzo tiles. New heating and lighting systems were also installed and the former St Joseph Chapel re-established.

Much of the work was carried out by St Joseph Affordable Homes, under the direction of CEO, Ben Wilson, and under the supervision of Michael McKenna, Project Manager of the restoration.

Watch the livestream of the Dedication of the Altar and Blessing of St Mary’s Cathedral.


Newly restored St Mary’s Cathedral reopened and blessed (By Catherine Sheehan, Hobart Archdiocese)