.- The Vatican has designated the Cathedral of St. Paul to be the first national shrine in honor of the Apostle Paul, following the request of Archbishop John C. Nienstedt of St. Paul and Minneapolis.
The special distinction was granted by the Office of the Holy See and the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, according to the Cathedral of St. Paul’s website. The cathedral will be the first national shrine in Minnesota and the only North American national shrine dedicated to honor St. Paul. The church particularly honors St. Paul through a series of bronze grills that depict major events in his life, ranging from his conversion to his martyrdom.
A shrine has a specific designation under canon law. It is a church or other sacred place to which the faithful may make pilgrimages for “a particular pious reason.”
Those who wish to participate in the National Shrine can do so by becoming members of the Archconfraternity of the Apostle Paul.
Although the Cathedral of St. Paul already receives over 200,000 guests and visitors every year, the cathedral staff expects that number to increase as a result of the designation.