One of the truly magnificent churches in North America. This Cathedral Basilica of the Assumption is worth any visitor's time (of any faith or none), it is suitable even for children, and will take a good hour or more just to do a cursory view of the many outstanding interior features. If you are able, go to an 8:15 a.m. morning Mass, when the light is coming through the spectacular stained-glass windows... esp. the massive windows picturing the Council of Ephesus and the coronation of the Blessed Mother (said to be the second largest stained glass window in the world). There is a quietude and peace that settles over the interior at that time... and after Mass, you can take your time exploring the amazing mosaic Stations of the Cross, and a 3-piece oil painting by Frank Duveneck, among other artists' and artisans' work. The Cathedral was begun in 1848 and grew in stages as money became available (the first stained glass windows weren't installed until 1909). There are a number of niches and side altars, very beautifully decorated, some featuring specific saints. The richness of the colours and surface treatments is a feast for the eyes and the senses. Also, behind the Cathedral is an open-air fountain/garden, with benches for simply sitting and quiet thought. The Covington Latin High School is located adjacent. Ample free parking to side and back. There is really no way to describe the magnificence of this church, and the impact it has on visitors--this is one of those sites that must be seen in person, due to the awe-inspiring heights and the significance of its history. In Europe, I have often seen people noisily chatting as they troup through cathedrals; often there are no pews and the cathedral is perceived more as a museum. That is not the case here. True, the Basilica of the Assumption is a busy parish in full swing; there is also an Hispanic Ministries Director and Spanish Masses. But there is a spirit of worship always present here--not of tourism. This is a place made to pray, to sing, to gaze in reverence, to receive grace in the midst of breathtaking Beauty. This place can change you.
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