People would probably think of New York City as an entertainment hub. Because of its colorful and active attractions, they have this notion that all it could offer is fun. Little did they know that it could also be a place to be spiritually rich. With its strong Catholic heritage, the Big Apple also prides itself on holy sites including Cathedrals, Monasteries, and Shrines. In this blog post, we will enumerate the most beautiful Catholic Shrines in New York City. Traveling each for your travel reference. So sit back, read, and take notes!
Here are the must-visit Catholic Shrines in New York City.
Holy Innocents Church
Let’s start our virtual tour with Holy Innocents Church. A Parish Church in Manhattan, it was established in 1866. Its Gothic revival architectural style is an eye-catcher. The structure is made up of Belleville and Ohio mixed stone. It has a classic rose window on the top facade. Inside, a heavenly white marble high Altar will welcome you. Behind it is the fresco of Crucifixion which is just marvelous. The stained glass windows are lovely together with the religious artworks such as sculptures and paintings. To add, it offers Latin Mass which is highly reverent. Since this is a Parish and a Shrine, you can visit its two (2) Shrines, the Return Crucifix and Our Mother of Perpetual Help, the Madonna of New York. Such a peaceful place in the midst of a busy city. Visit and pray.
St. Xavier Cabrini Shrine
Our next holy destination is St. Xavier Cabrini Shrine. Located at 701 Fort Washington Ave., New York City, this Shrine dedicated to the first American citizen to be canonized is a serene place to visit. With a horizontal parabolic arch, it has elaborate stained glass windows depicting the life of Christ and St. Frances’ image. The main focus of the Shrine is St. Frances’ body rests beneath the Altar. There are Majestic mosaics of her Including her works on display as well. They also boast a pipe organ which is rare in the US. Religious sculptures are everywhere in and out of the Shrine. Additionally, the side chapels and the grounds are perfect for prayer and meditation. If you visit, don’t forget to drop by their gift shop where they sell a variety of items. A New York’s hidden treasure.
Church of Our Lady of Mount Carmel
A Parish under the Archdiocese of New York, the Pontifical Shrine of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel was constructed in 1884 and completed in 1885. Situated in Manhattan, it is currently under the administration of the Polish Pallotine Fathers. The structure is elegantly quaint making it traditional looking outside. Inside, it has resplendent stained glass windows and gorgeous statues. Its highlight is the enshrined image of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel canonically crowned. Note also that every July 16 of the year is the annual Feast of Our Lady and has been a primary event in East Harlem. Aside from this, because of its strong Italian background, annually, on the second weekend of August, there is an Italian festival on the streets around the Church. You should not miss the Dancing Giglio performance which is really fun!
Shrine of St. Elizabeth Ann Bayley Seton
Another on our list Shrine of St. Elizabeth Ann Bayle Seton. Located inside the Church of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary which is in the Financial District in Manhattan, the home of the first American-born Saint, its establishment in 1884 was to be a mission. In 1886, it attained Parish status. Its construction started in 1964 and finished in 1965. With its Georgian Revival slash Colonial Revival architectural style, the Church exudes uniqueness, especially in its brick exterior which is jaw-dropping. The Our Lady of the Rosary Church has a simple yet remarkable interior. The design is clean and basic but at the same time artsy with its religious items. The centerpiece is an Altar with stained glass windows behind which is magnificent. A place of worship in the middle of skyscrapers! This is a must-visit Catholic Shrine in New York City.
Shrine Church of Our Lady of Solace
Last but definitely not least is the Shrine Church of Our Lady of Solace. Located in Brooklyn, it was founded in 1900 and was a former dance hall. It was in 1906 that it received recognition of being a Shrine. It is under the care of Vocationist Fathers. The structure is a combination of Spanish and Italian styles. It has an intricate facade with a rose window. On the inside, there are artistic stained glass windows and statues. An ornate Altar is the center of this Shrine below a grandeur apse that catches attention. One of its holy assets is the image of Our Lady of Solace which is one of the points of interest of pilgrims. Lying in the garden plaza is the marble statue of the Holy Family which is emotionally moving. Overall, the place is quiet and tranquil. A Sanctuary that should be on your bucket list.
There you have the must-see Catholic Shrines in New York City!
These sites are holy and uplifting. Apart from their physical quality that is just breathtaking, the most important characteristic they possess is their significance in the spirituality of Catholics. These Shrines inspire everyone to walk in faith. To be a living witness of Christ in this ever-changing world.
As Catholics, visiting religious destinations could help us to be better people. The learning we could acquire from their inspiration is just endless.
May you have a holy and fruitful journey.
Prayer, travel, and enjoy!