Historical Background of the Church
The foundation stone of the present cathedral was laid by Bishop Edward Fitzgerald on July 7, 1878. The church, designed by local architect Thomas Harding, was dedicated on November 27, 1881. The tallest tower on the facade was completed in 1887.
A tornado struck the center of Little Rock in 1950, damaging the tower and two of the stained-glass windows. The current rectory was built in 1966. The cathedral of Sant’Andrea was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1986. The diocese was erected on November 28, 1843, with the short in suprema militants by Pope Gregory XVI, deriving its territory from the diocese of Saint Louis (today archdiocese). The first bishop was consecrated on March 10, 1844, and entered the city on horseback on June 4 of that same year. On July 19, 1850, the diocese became part of the ecclesiastical province of New Orleans. In the following decade, the anti-Catholic movement of Know-Nothing spread, which is 1854 set fire to a church in Helena.
Church’s Acts for Territory Perfection
On May 14, 1876, the diocese ceded a portion of its territory for the benefit of the erection of the apostolic prefecture of the Indian Territory (today Archdiocese of Oklahoma City). Around the 1880s the diocese completed its organization: in 1881 the cathedral was consecrated and throughout the decade it started to build schools and churches. In 1911 the diocesan seminary was opened. In the 1950s the problem of racial segregation arose. Previously there were churches reserved for Negroes, which were gradually closed, in a process of integration between the different races.
Bishop – An Eclessiatical Authority and Subjects of Concern
In 1957 the bishop protested against the ban placed by the authority on the enrollment of black students in the diocesan high school. In the 1960s, the bishop faced some seminary teachers who contested Church doctrine on certain points, such as birth control and papal infallibility. For the same reason, the seminar was closed in 1967.
On December 13, 1972, the diocese left the ecclesiastical province of New Orleans to join that of Oklahoma City. In the new millennium, the apostolate is addressed above all to the Hispanic faithful, immigrants in the diocese in large numbers. In October 2007, six nuns of the diocese were hit by ex-communication for joining a Canadian schismatic association.
Location and Its Importance as a Landmark
Little Rock is a city in the United States of America, the capital and most populous center of the state of Arkansas. The city is located in the central area of the state and is also the capital of Pulaski County. The name Little Rock derives from a small rock formation on the southern bank of the Arkansas River which was called by the French La Petite Roche (“the small rock”). In the years of the first explorations in the area, the “small rock” became a well-known landmark and gave its name to the settlement that developed here.