Grace Cathedral is an Episcopal Cathedral in San Francisco’s Nob Hill neighborhood. It’s one of those churches that I always wanted to go for a Sunday service, even if I’m not an Episcopalian. We attended a Christmas midnight service a couple of years ago and the place was full. In February, my husband took me to the meeting of the newly elected Bishop committee members. After the half-day meeting, we stayed behind to snap some photos. And these are the ones I snapped that day.
The door was very interesting. I did not think much about it, but found out a fascinating information about the door as I was doing some reading on Grace Cathedral from Wikipedia. Here’s what I found about this door:
The cathedral entrance has an impressive pair of doors, often called the Ghiberti doors. They are a copy of the doors of the Florence Baptistry by Lorenzo Ghiberti, also dubbed Gates of Paradise. It has been said that they had been removed from a Renaissance church in Florence, but it is now known that during World War II the Nazi occupation government had ordered the doors to be removed from the church (to protect them from bombing and maybe to give Hermann Göring a chance to add them to his collection) and that they had been hidden in a disused railway tunnel and that reproductions had been made. The philanthropist Charles D. Field bought these replicas, and they were then shipped to San Francisco and installed on the newly-completed church in time for its official dedication in 1964.
The cathedral has two labyrinths, one inside and another outside. The labyrinths are themselves a tourist destinations. The labyrinths are based on the famous medieval labyrinth of The Cathedral of Our Lady of Chartres in Chartres, France. It is said that if a visitor walks the patterns of the labyrinth, it will bring them to a meditative state.
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(I dont know how to undo the block quote so the rest of the text became quote; they’re not meant to be.)