Houston prepares to dedicate new Co-Cathedral
The new Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart
The new Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart

.- The "stunning" Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart will be dedicated in Houston by Cardinal Daniel DiNardo next Wednesday, ABC affiliate KTRK reports.

"It is as though, in an analogy, we are baptizing the building," Cardinal DiNardo said, describing the consecration of the new cathedral.

The cardinal also explained how he will dedicate the altar:

"I will take the oil of chrism, which is a type of holy oil, olive oil mixed with perfume, and pour it, literally, all over the altar, and it will be spread all over the altar as a sign of its dedication.  Then we will take that same chrism and we will anoint twelve places in the building, symbolic of the twelve apostles, the foundations of the Church."

The altar, positioned directly under the dome of the cathedral, was made from one piece of semi-precious stone cut and polished in Herrera, Italy.  The color of its red marble represents the blood of Christ. 

The altar will contain relics of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, the first American saint, St. Leo the Great, St. Therese of Lisieux, and St. Margaret Mary Alacoque.

The co-cathedral was designed and built over a seven year period at a cost of $40 million.

"It's a traditional building, in some sense, it's in the form of a cross, like so many of our cathedrals and churches," Cardinal DiNardo said.

The dedication will include prayers, music, and the reading of a letter from Pope Benedict XVI.

To view videos of the new cathedral visit: http://abclocal.go.com/ktrk/story?section=news&id=6002137

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