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

Laura Schünemann (9 months ago)
A nice place to visit in the early evening so you can even enjoy the sunset during your visit! The basilica is located on a little hill and gives you a nice view over the city Lisieux.
Gary Galante (10 months ago)
Magnificent basilica dedicated to one of the greatest saints of our time in the Roman Catholic Church. The humble nun died at just 24 years old. This grand edifice is testament to her greatness.
Vann Corpuz (2 years ago)
Very nice Basilique! Adore the mosaic walls and the ceiling!
Gie Aquino Sanson (2 years ago)
nice to walk on top of the Dome.One of Normandy's beautiful place to visit.
Anuska Ooteem (2 years ago)
Feel at peace ✌. Here we found love everyone without reason!
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