Church Madness 2017
The Oratory of Saint Francis de Sales, sometimes called the Cathedral of South Saint Louis, was completed in 1908. It was the tallest church in the country at the time of its completion having being designed in the same style as the tallest church in Germany, the Ulm Minster, by architects brought over from Berlin in the country of origin of the first parishioners. An excellent example of gothic revival architecture at the turn of the last century, the "Cathedral of South Saint Louis" was recently voted the most beautiful Church in America in the Church Madness 2017 competition conducted by Art and Liturgy.
Explore Tradition for Tomorrow
The St. Francis de Sales church campus occupies an entire city block at the corner of Gravois and Ohio in South Saint Louis. For more than a century, the soaring steeple — tallest in all of St. Louis – and majestic edifice of St. Francis de Sales have symbolized hope and stability: the hopes of its immigrant founders, and an enduring stability rooted in tradition.
For nearly ten years since the Institute assumed management of St. Francis de Sales, restoration of one area or another has been a constant, daily process. There is always work to be done on something, somewhere on campus. Both the age of the campus and the years of disrepair contributed to the need for vigilant care of the beautiful church entrusted to us. In addition, the congregation continues to grow, and all its members, particularly the young, depend on a functioning church.
It has been the goal of the Institute of Christ the King to continue what generations before us have passed on to us. First and foremost through the celebration of the immemorial liturgy. As well, we have been entrusted with a great edifice; we have the special task to keep it alive not only through using the building but as well restoring this 100 plus year old structure.
St. Francis de Sales is rich in history. Being one of the oldest parishes in the Archdioceses of St. Louis, it has been the spiritual home for many generations. It has become a part of St. Louis' tradition both spiritual and historical. Much hard work has gone into keeping its history alive. There are many critical issues which must be addressed in the near future in order to keep a piece of St. Louis' tradition for future generations.