On April 19, Pope Benedict will celebrate Mass with priests, deacons, and men and women in consecrated life at Saint Patrick’s Cathedral in New York.
Located in the heart of midtown Manhattan (at Fifth Avenue and 50th Street), the construction of the Cathedral began in 1858 with the laying of the cornerstone. Though construction was suspended during the Civil War, it resumed in 1865. The Cathedral was dedicated in 1879. Construction continued in the following years with the addition of the spires, the Lady Chapel, and the organ.
The present Cathedral replaced “Old Saint Patrick’s”, the earlier cathedral begun in 1809, shortly after New York was established as an archdiocese.
Many of the past archbishops of New York are entombed in the crypt beneath Saint Patrick’s Cathedral. In 1990, the body of the Venerable Pierre Toussaint was exhumed and reburied in the crypt. At the Youth Event later on April 19, Pope Benedict will receive a portrait of Pierre Toussaint (and other saints, blessed, and venerables who have lived or served in New York).
Source: Saint Patrick’s Cathedral.