Liepāja’s St. Joseph’s Cathedral is the largest Catholic church in Kurzeme with a rich and ornate interior.
The history of the cathedral begins in 1747 when a small stone church was built. Over time the old church became too small and a much larger building designed by architect Louis Melville was constructed in 1896 in Neo-Romantic style. The building was constructed using the so-called Danzig bricks which were individually wrapped and transported from Germany.
The old church building was not demolished but incorporated into the new church building. When inside the church and looking to the left, to the Chapel of Virgin Mary, the central altar of the old church can be seen along with the old masonry.
19th century paintings of Bible stories can be seen all around – on the columns, the walls and the wooden ceiling. A model sailing ship hangs high up from the ceiling – a gift from a ship’s crew who prayed for divine providence before setting sail. There is a small exhibition hall in the church tower, where the work of different artists is on display.