For 100 years, the iconic copper dome of the Cathedral of Saint Paul has served as one of the most recognizable landmarks in the Saint Paul skyline. We asked readers to share their stories and images that capture their personal connections to the cathedral.
Filmmaker Matthew Deery submitted an aerial video he took last summer with a photography drone.
I have always been fascinated by the Cathedral since I was a little kid, especially when it is lit up at dusk/night. The way the building glows in the dark blue sky has always been captivating to me -- now as an adult, I've taken my creative abilities and used them to capture this feeling. I am not Catholic, but I love the building and its representation of the city of St. Paul.
Shantel Schallenkamp described her experiences working there:
In 2011, the cathedral became not just my spiritual home and place of worship, but also in a way that is difficult to call a job, one of my places of employment, when I was asked to serve as one of six sacristans. Largely a behind-the-scenes job, the role of the Sacristan is to help prepare the sanctuary, clergy, and mass ministers (Extraordinary Ministers and Lectors) for the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. It is one of the most beautiful jobs I have ever had. When we attend a mass at the cathedral, we watch the clergy process down the aisle, into the sanctuary and begin “In the Name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, Amen”. Working as a sacristan, I get to witness the prayerful preparation our clergy go through long before Holy Mass begins; Silent, contemplative prayer (perhaps the Liturgy of the Hours or personal prayers), vesting, preparing the Roman Missal for the day's mass, reviewing their homily, and perhaps tending to a parishioner with a particular need or reviewing something with a server. Then, before heading to the back of the cathedral to line up for the procession, I get to pray with them, the highlight of my shift.
Several readers wrote about family members who helped to build the cathedral.
Lisa Wedell Ueki of Shoreview said her great-grandfather, who worked on a number of famous Saint Paul buildings.
My great-grandfather August Wedell was one of the Swedish immigrants who helped in [the cathedral's] construction. He also helped in the construction of the Minnesota State Capitol building and the St. Paul Union Depot. Many of the capitol workers also worked on the construction of the cathedral. My great-grandfather died in 1919 during the construction of the St. Paul Union Depot when a stone wall collapsed on him.
Kelsey Johnson and her mother, Cheryl Larson, told us about Larson's grandfather, a mason named Peter Larson who participated in the construction. They write:
He was a Swedish immigrant who married a German immigrant and lived in St. Paul. He was an operating engineer and came from the town of Nossjo in northern Sweden - near the Finnish border. Operating engineers run cranes, steam shovels, derricks, etc. They were small and dangerous in those days, but they did have them.
Finally, photography buddies Andy Berg and Tim Och sent us some striking images of the cathedral at night.
(Courtesy of Andrew Berg)
Berg’s photo, above, was captured with a fisheye lens. Och submitted an image taken from a bit further away:
(Courtesy of Tim Och)
Reader submissions have been lightly edited.