The Renovation & Restoration
A leak in the roof and other long deferred maintenance issues, as well as modern codes on seismic stability and fire suppression, made it necessary to do more than patchwork in the cathedral. It was decided that the cathedral was overdue for a renovation and restoration. Over the cathedral's first century, because of attempts to modernize the look of the cathedral and keep up with changes in the liturgy after the Second Vatican Council, a lot of aesthetic changes were made to the interior. So much so, that it completely lost its cohesive Victorian design. So, a restoration to the cathedral’s original motif was also required.
In an article by Anne Gonzalez from 1998, she reports, ”The Roman Catholic Diocese of Sacramento has embarked on an assessment of the 109-year-old cathedral at 11th and K streets. The study, due out at the end of September, will be the framework of a renovation of the church, and in particular, its distinctive 115-foot-high dome. The project might take many years of fund raising and research into a building whose history has been long buried by time, weather, previous modifications and a lack of accurate records."
It took five years of planning and execution, $34 million, and required the parish to worship in neighboring churches for two years, but the results were stunning, and insured that the cathedral will be still standing for another century and beyond.
Beyer Blinder Belle Architects & Planners LLP
Harbison-Mahony-Higgins Builders, Inc
Vanir Construction Management
West end and Vestibule
"Visitors to the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament will no doubt continue to be taken by its size, beauty and proportions. But its architecture and decor are only intended to point men and women to the deeper mysteries they symbolize. Here God "pitches His tent among" us as he gathers his people; awakens and deepens their faith through Word and Sacrament; and accompanies them through life's transitions. The Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament gives silent witness to the power of faith and the triumph of hope in California's capitol."
~Father Steven M. Avella~
"The crosses on top of the Cathedral range from six to eight feet tall, and there are seven of them.
That's a lot of crosses, and a lot of gold leaf! But it's also an important statement to downtown Sacramento about life, death, and the mystery of the Eucharist. Those crosses are a reminder to all of us who pass below that God loves us and died for us; that the Christian cross gives meaning to the pains and sorrows of life despite the temptation of so many to give up; that love and beauty do win in the end despite the hate and horror we humans get ourselves into. That is the good news of the Gospel, which transcends the styles of any one era."
~Father James Murphy~