Saint Joseph’s Oratory, Mount Royal, Montreal, 1937
Beginning of the construction of the dome.

© Saint Joseph’s Oratory of Mount-Royal (115-56), © Héritage Montréal 

Standing at the highest point in Montreal on lovely Mount Royal, Saint Joseph’s Oratory was built over the course of 42 years on a wonderful property with some of the most breathtaking views of the city. The exterior is designed in the classic Beaux-Arts style, its dome being the third largest in the world. The interior, completed in 1966, is decidedly and wonderfully modern. 

Saint Brother André, a native Québecois, started a chapel in honor of Saint Joseph in 1904. Having outgrown the space, plans for a larger church were put in place in 1916 and construction of the basilica began in 1924. Masses of followers made pilgrimages to Montreal to see Brother André during his lifetime as he was known to perform miracles. I have long felt a connection to this place because my grandmother was one of those followers in the 1930s who firmly believed she herself was healed by Brother André.