Located at No. 40 Nha Chung Street, Old Quarter Hanoi, the Saint Joseph’s Cathedral Hanoi is a Roman Catholic cathedral with Gothic style, which was built about 120 years ago. It’s now an old cathedral church of the Archdiocese of Hanoi where to hold the religious activities of the parishioners of Hanoi.
In 1882, after the French army conquered Hanoi, the cathedral was designed by Bishop Puginier, constructed and completed in 1886. The St Joseph’s Cathedral Hanoi and Nha Chung area were built on the land formerly belonging to Bao Thien pagoda, which was built under Ly dynasty.
The architecture with domes of the cathedral follows the Gothic style and design of Paris Cathedral. It is 64.5m in length, 20.5m in width with two bell towers of prominent 31.5m-height. Thorough the appearance of the St Joseph’s cathedral, from the doors, the colorful window glass, to the religious paintings for decoration follows Western style; the main interior part is decorated in Vietnamese way with two typical colors yellow and red. Outside, in front of the cathedral is the metal statue of Mother Maria.
The first Christmas took place at St Joseph’s cathedral Hanoi in 1887. Since then, the cathedral is always crowded with hundreds of people including both Christians and non-Christians at the weekend or during religious holidays like Christmas.
From the outside, the St Joseph’s cathedral looks old and worn down by the faded paint as well as the green moss. But when step into the inside area, you will be amazed at a very modern architecture that exists everlasting with time.
The St Joseph’s cathedral Hanoi is also one of the centers of Catholic activities in Hanoi and surrounding provinces. It has 2 masses everyday and 7 masses on Sunday. Besides, the cathedral also organizes the Jesus Saint Celebrations for the General Diocese of Hanoi City on March 19 every year.
Nowadays, Nha Chung Street becomes a popular gathering place to many youngsters in Hanoi at night, and home to eye-catching souvenir shops and Western style restaurants. It is not only the holly place for Christian couples hold their wedding, but also a great venue for non-religious grooms and brides to take nice wedding shots.