Last Thursday, I attended Mass at Chicago’s Holy Name Cathedral. It doesn’t look quite like this today. At the time, I thought to myself, “This is a tremendous mishmash of eras, decor-wise. I wonder what it looked like originally. That ceiling is so unbelievably gorgeous.” Now, thanks to Mitsui, I have some idea of what it used to be like.


  1. I’m really sorry you attended Mass at HN Cathedral in Chicago. As one priest friend put it to me, “Everything that is wrong with the Archdiocese of Chicago is apparent in that church.”

    A sad story about the Cathedral: In Evanston, IL, there’s a firm, Botti Designs, that repairs stained glass around the world. I got to know the owner because our house had leaded glass windows that constantly needed repairing. When he was 16 during the reign of Cardinal Cody, they were called down to the Cathedral to replace the ornate stained glass with the modern version of today. The Cardinal ordered them to toss the windows in the dumpster and destroy them. The Cardinal stood in the alley to make sure this was done.

    Next time you’re in Chicago, try St. John Cantius (just west of the river on Chicago Avenue – 5 minute cab ride from downtown) or St. Mary of the Angels. Both churches have websites. Both will knock your socks off in terms of beauty and reverent Masses.

    Best regards,

    Stephen Joseph

  2. hieronymus says

    If you want to see more pictures, go to and type “holy name cathedral” into the search box.

  3. Matthew Lickona says

    Thanks, both of you!

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