Church bells toll as Geraldton Cathedral re-opens

Media Release

DC439/2017

15 December 2017

Joint release with:

Melissa Price

Federal Member for Durack

  • Geraldton's St Francis Xavier Cathedral re-opens after restoration
  • Cathedral now boasts stunning new artworks, mosaics and stained glass windows
  • The Coalition Government invested $3 million towards stages 3 and 4 of the project

Parishioners and tourists rejoiced today with the heritage listed St Francis Xavier Cathedral in Geraldton re-opening its doors after extensive construction and restoration works.

Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester said the project would allow the 100 year-old Cathedral to serve the Geraldton community for decades to come.

“The landmark St Francis Xavier Cathedral is recognised as one of the most significant cathedrals designed by the internationally renowned priest-architect Monsignor John Hawes,” Mr Chester said.

“From its magnificent architecture, including the grand central dome, to the new organ featuring 1,300 pipes, it will stand proud and inspire us all for the next century.

“It has already paid dividends for the community, creating almost 200 jobs, and it's great to see another 2016 federal election commitment delivered.”

Federal Member for Durack Melissa Price joined parishioners for a service today, where the new Bishop of Geraldton, the Most Reverend Michael Morrissey took possession of the Cathedral.

“Stages 3 and 4 included a new entrance staircase and major refurbishments to the interior of the Cathedral including a new floor and coverings, lighting and CCTV system, as well as new stained glass windows,” Ms Price said.

“The interior has been painted and restored including the original Cathedral baptistry. Many beautiful commissioned artworks have been installed, with a stunning mosaic featured in a new baptismal pool designed and executed by WA artist Ms Dawn Meader.

“The final stage of works was the construction and landscaping of the Midwest Botanical Garden with a variety of garden beds, paving, limestone retaining walls, lighting and irrigation—a lovely place for family photos after your wedding.”

Stages 3 and 4 of the project were jointly funded by the Coalition Government ($3 million) and the Roman Catholic Bishop of Geraldton ($137,841).

Previous stages of works included the restoration of the Cathedral's exterior and construction of the new Monsignor Hawes Heritage Centre.