Everything Southern & So Cotton Pickin Cute

Sunday, March 14, 2010


 Good Morning, Good Afternoon or even Good Evening.  I don't care what time you stopped by, I'm just glad to have you here.  

Do you remember what we talked about last week?  Did you think about looking around and seeing things from a new point of view, maybe with a new attitude?  I'd love to hear about it if you did.

WARNING:  This is long (aren't they usually) and lots of pictures.

 Saturday afternoon I had to go downtown.  In Jacksonville downtown is pretty much shut down on the weekends.  It's not like other metropolitan cities such as downtown Seattle and San Francisco.  What a perfect time to ride by a church I've noticed several times.  The architecture is incredible and whenever I passed it the detail always caught my eye.  So I stopped and took several pictures.  I'm sure I could have gotten some better photos but it's not very safe for a woman to be out there by herself.  My old age must be finally taking hold, I can remember when I would have never worried about things like that - ahhhh' wisdom.  The only ones around are the homeless or mentally disabled (mumbling and such) or some unsavory characters.  Now don't get me wrong.  I would never be unpleasant to anyone anywhere and my heart goes out to them but you do have to consider safety these days.  So I only took pictures that I could get by staying in the car.


While taking my tourist photos I couldn't help but be in awe of the amazing craftsmanship of this cathedral.  By the way this is the only cathedral in Jacksonville.  Looking at it I thought I could almost be in another country.  This is so old and beautiful like the pictures I've seen of buildings in other countries.  I can't begin to imagine the creativity of someone to imagine this and design it.  And what about the men who carved these stone pieces and the men who carved the wood?  What about the stain glass artisans?  This is only the outside.  Take a look at these beautiful Celtic crosses with all their adornment.  I don't know much about the Episcople faith so forgive me if these that name isn't correct.  I wish I had a zoom lens that would have gotten closer views.  BTW - Look at those gorgeous blue skies.  We had such a pretty weekend.  I love this time of year when the blue is so deep and bold.  Once the real heat comes everything gets kinda gray and washed out.  Today and yesterday was just beautiful.



What did these men think as they spent countless hours laying these stones, installing these windows, carving the magnificent woodwork?  Did they feel Gods touch?  Certainly the hands of God lead them, steadied their hands, used them in an extraordinary manner.  Only a higher power, GOD could have given man the imagination and talent, the drive and wherewithal.  Only our LORD could have given man the driving passion to create beauty, beauty like this.

That thought led me to think about that burning desire to create.  I believe all of us in blogland experience this in someway.  The feeling to create whether it be in storytelling, crafting in an enormous number of different ways, or even in creating a blog itself just so you could touch other people, perhaps even help other people.  God gave us a desire to seek others, to be a part of more than ourselves. 

I came home and searched for a brief history about this very old church.  I've included some of what I found below in case you might like to read it.

 I wish all of you a blessed and wonderful week.  Enjoy every moment of everyday and see God's grace everywhere you look.

I love ya'll.....Tracy :)


The Great Fire of 1901 was one of the worst disasters in Florida history and the largest urban fire in the Southeast. It was similar in scale and destruction to the 1871 Great Chicago Fire.


Around noon of Friday, May 3, 1901, a spark from a kitchen fire during the lunch hour at a mattress factory set mattresses filled with Spanish moss on fire at the factory, located in an area now known as LaVilla. The fire was soon discovered and it was thought they could put it out with only a few buckets of water. Consequently an alarm was not turned on until it had gone beyond their control.


The fire swept through 146 city blocks, destroyed over 2,368 buildings, and left almost 10,000 people homeless all in the course of eight hours. It is said the glow from the flames could be seen in Savannah, Georgia; smoke plumes in Raleigh, North Carolina.

Florida Governor William S. Jennings declared a state of martial law in Jacksonville and dispatched several state militia units to help. Reconstruction started immediately, and the city was returned to civil authority on May 17. Despite the widespread damage, only seven deaths were reported.

The 1877 sanctuary was destroyed in the Great Fire of 1901, and the congregation again called on the architect Edward Potter, then with the firm of Snelling and Potter, to design a new church. Built on the foundation of the former church building and dramatically sited with an unbroken vista at the summit of Market Street, the new church was completed for Easter services in 1906. Its cost was $90,000. This building is cruciform in shape and Gothic Revival in style with a square bell tower reminiscent of an English parish church. But the tower is atypical in its location at the angle of the transept and the chancel, instead of at the crossing. The facade displays an interesting array of architectural and ecclesiastical ornamentation, including winged gargoyles, the eagles of St. John, Celtic crosses on the gables, Tudor and lancet arched windows with intricate tracery, buttresses, and whimsical frog gargoyles.

The exterior is faced with Indiana limestone, and the roof is made of slate from Pennsylvania. The interior is topped by a hammer-beam trussed ceiling faced with native cypress and is lit by numerous stained glass windows, including an authentic Tiffany. The original altar is made of French Caen stone, complemented by an Indiana limestone pulpit and octagonal baptismal font. In 1951 the church was elevated to the status of Cathedral of the Diocese of Florida. To commemorate the 150th anniversary of St. John's Parish, the cathedral underwent a $1,700,000 restoration in 1983-1984, under the supervision of the architectural firm of Gordon & Smith, thus enhancing the preservation of one of this city's important landmarks.


  1. This IS a gorgeous old church. They sure don't make things like they used to--unfortunately. I love the detail and craftsmanship!
    I took a brief fly by your blog a few days ago and am here now to read more. What a pretty blog! Thank you for stopping by for a visit on mine (hope you're feeling better today). I'm looking forward to the petite basket swap. I've found the basket already and am having fun finding little treasures to put in it. ; ) Have a great day!

  2. What a magnificant post! The Cathedral church is just amazing! God does play a huge part in our creativity and who we are lead to and by to share our thoughts and talents with. You know He says for us not to hide our talents away and I think that is to (1)glorify His name (2)inspire others (3)the fellowship we have with other artists and crafters (4)by example to others to have the courage to step out and use their talent! I don't believe God meant for any of us to do anything in life alone!

    Thanks for stopping by and leaving your wonderful comments on my post! I always treasure what you say becuase it always lifts me up and makes my day so much brighter!

    Life is good but if we had no struggles would we want to leave this old Earth and go to Heaven! I think the harder the struggle the more we'll appreciate Heaven when we get there!Friends like you sure do make the struggle so much easier to bear!

    And sometimes the depression feels like it is going to eat my soul inside out but I do have a good doctor and the paxil helps but family and friends really is the best medicine! Everytime I feel myself slipping, I just think of all that I have been blessed with and suddenly it's not that bad! Just like your post last week...taking the time to look around at what the Lord has given us...how many miracles did we overlook because we weren't paying attention?

    I am going to take the time to write out my story ...you are not going to believe what the Lord has done for me! All I can say is that miracles come in threes!

    And remeber Paul--he was a great man of God but he did say he had an affliction that he prayed for the Lord to take away and the Lord didn't relieve him of this affliction. Paul said that it because God wanted Paul to stay dependent upon Him--the affliction kept Paul closer to God!

    Paul also said I have "learned" to be happy, no matter the circumstances! I believe the affliction taught him to appreciate everything in life and gave him more empathy towards others to bring them to God! There is a reason for everything God does! I know that my struggles with depression has made me a more compassionate and patient person! It is a miracle when good comes from bad situations!Have a great week!

    Lots of love!

  3. Tracy,
    Sorry I haven't been around in a bit, my hands are kind of full right now...know that you are always in my thoughts and I carry you in my heart...I hope things are better than well for you right now...by the way bravo on the pics! Absolutely love them... XO Keke

  4. Beautiful photos, I love finding old churches and building like this one. And I agree, I'm always in awe of the talent and work it took to build it! Great post! And thank you for stopping my blog!

  5. Yes its really very nice and informative post. thanks for sharing with us.

  6. What a beautiful church! And your pictures were fantastic, I couldn't tell they were taken from your car and that you didn't have a different lens. The details are incredible. And all that for only $90,000. That's amazing.

    Enjoy your nice weather! We are having beautiful temps here. It got warm so quick this winter! I am enjoying it!

  7. Happy St. Patrick's Day!!! We are all ready for the big day at our house!