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“Modest but Beautiful”

Immaculate Conception Church
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St Lucia Highlights Tour
Ranked #4 of 53 things to do in Castries
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: One of the largest churches in the West Indies has some lovely frescoes.
Reviewed 5 December 2013

We skipped our cruise ship's shore excursions to wander the streets of Castries to see what the town was like and to see how the St Lucians lived. We came across the Cathedral of Castries and were surprised to see that it was Roman Catholic, rather than Anglican. Although many of the islands of the eastern Caribbean were British, St Lucia was founded by the French, and Castries was named after a French nobleman. The British subsequently took over in the 1800s, but the French influence remained.

The Cathedral is quite large and rather attractive in a low key sort of way. In the Catholic style, there were side altars, and paintings on the walls depicting religious motifs, but there was not the magnificent artwork typical of the great churches of Europe. The ceiling was adorned with painted religious scenes, but they were rather faded. Below the roof were clerestory windows which provided a lot of interior illumination.

We visited on a Wednesday in midmorning, so there was no service underway, but there were a number of St Lucians seated around the church praying or experiencing the quiet contemplation that a church permits.

In the rear of the church was a sign indicating that there was a renovation fund to which we contributed. We hope that someday soon the proud St Lucians will be able to enhance the beauty of their cathedral.

4  Thank practans
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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134 - 138 of 204 reviews

Reviewed 2 December 2013

Our cruise ship arrived on Sunday so we decided to find a church to attend mass. Immaculate Conception is a short walk from the cruise dock. We arrived to find they were having a children's mass at 10:30. It was a moving experience as we saw all the girls dressed in fresh clean crisp dresses and the boys with shirts and ties. They played island music along with wonderful singing. It was fun to see them all move to the beat of the music, even the priest. Mass lasted almost 2 hours. Wish we could attend here regularly. Don't miss this church if you have time.

4  Thank Richard F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 November 2013

Unlike the gilded palaces in Rome this simple place of worship has only the barest adornments. The statues are broken, the frescos are worn and the stained glass simple & child-like. But it is a wonderfully simple place of worship in a place which has experienced slavery & emancipation, uplifting, beautiful church.

Thank dentheprint
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 November 2013

Mass is celebrated at 7:00pm on Saturday, and 6:00am, 8:00am & 10:30am on Sunday.

We read a lot of great reviews, so we decided to see the church for ourselves. We stayed at Sandals La Toc which was about a 10min ride to the church by taxi. The taxi was a bit expensive at $40 for round trip.
We attended the Saturday night mass and it was a great experience, very lively. The parishioners welcomed us with open arms and brought us some song books as well as a bulletin so that we can follow along. We were surprised on how nicely everyone was dressed; everyone had their Sunday best on. The mass did last about 1.5hrs so plan your taxi pickup accordingly.
The church is magnificent, when you walk in it seem like you can fit a football field inside. No wonder its one of the largest churches in the Caribbean. The church was built in 1899, so it’s almost 115yrs old. You can tell that some parts of the church are quickly deteriorating, especially the roof and some walls; you can see some water damage on them. The side alters are also crumbling down. But the parish is doing a great job on restoring the church, most of the roof on the inside looks newly resorted and there are new murals painted on most of the walls. At times there is a lot of street noise that can be heard, since all the windows are open in hopes of some air circulation.

Tip: There is not air conditioning in the church so if your planning on attending mass bring something to fan yourself with, it does tend to get hot and there is little air circulation.

Thank JustDiveIn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 November 2013

celebrated family event here, priest was very helpful and hospitable. Very difficult to find parking locally, but again locals helped out

Thank monkeybreathLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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