Cultural Synthesis

Church of St-Micheal and St-Anthony, Montréal

This is a picture of the Church of St-Micheal and St-Anthony, in the Plateau neighbourhood of Montréal. Originally built for the largest anglophone parish in Montréal, the church initially served the Mile End’s original Irish working-class population. Completed in 1915, the church is particular for its generally Byzantine-style architecture, undoubtedly an homage of sorts to the Hagia Sophia, with a large copper-clad dome and a minaret. However, upon closer inspection you’ll notice traditional Irish symbols, most notably the ubiquitous shamrock, which take the form of reliefs and windows, among other things. In 1964, the church opened a Polish mission to reflect the change in local religious demographics. Today it serves a primarily Polish/Italian congregation.

So to recap: Montréal has a beautiful church built for an Irish population, in a Byzantine style heavily influenced by a massive cathedral/mosque in Istanbul. It serves a predominantly Polish and Italian congregation with additional services in Ukrainian, and is strategically located in Montréal’s Jewish/Greek/Hipster neighbourhood.

You gotta love how we do cosmopolitanism…

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