Basilica of St. Thérèse

Lisieux, France

The Basilica of St. Thérèse of Lisieux can accommodate 4,000 people, and, with more than two million visitors a year, is the second largest pilgrimage site in France, after Lourdes. Pope John Paul II visited the Basilica on 2 June 1980. St. Therese of Lisieux was beatified in 1923 and canonised in 1925. It was decided to build a large basilica dedicated to her in the city where she lived and died. Construction started in 1929 and finished in 1954. The basilica contains 18 minor altars offered by different nations to St. Therese. Works stopped for some time due to the Second World War, but then resumed and the basilica was completed in 1954. The basic structure, which was completed before the war, suffered little damage during the bombing, which destroyed two-thirds of Lisieux. On 11 July 1951, the basilica was consecrated by Most Reverend, the Archbishop of Rouen Joseph-Marie Martin, with the Papal Legate, Maurice Cardinal Feltin.

The construction was supervised by three architects from father to son, Cordonnier - Louis Marie, and his son Louis-Stanislas Cordonnier and his grandson Louis Cordonnier. The Roman-Byzantine style of the basilica was inspired by the Sacred Heart Basilica, Paris. The building is in the shape of a Latin cross, with nave, choir and transept. The cross is surmounted by an imposing dome. The internal volume is all in one piece, without collateral or ambulatory aisles. Hence due to the absence of columns, all the faithful who attend mass have an unobstructed view. Most of the interior of the basilica is covered with mosaics.

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Founded: 1929-1954
Category: Religious sites in France

Rating

4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Ruwan Prasad (2 years ago)
A very big and beautiful Basilica of St Theresa of Child JESUS. A relic of St John Paul the II is kept.
Fernando Mendez (3 years ago)
Very honored to be there, meditation Church.
Shaiju Thoppil (3 years ago)
Great experience. Must go
P. B. (3 years ago)
We liked basilica - it was very calm just before dark. Magnificent structure very impressive and modern. Recommend to visit.
chi chi (3 years ago)
Very spiritual place. Astonishing magnificent building, Arts and wonderful museum. Perfect place for spiritual reflection.
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