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The portrait of the Christ on the Cross and his Sorrowful Mother hangs above the main altar. The original fresco was executed by New Orleans artist A. Biorci in 1888 as an adaptation of Guido Reni's classical painting. In 1931, the deteriorating, fresco was replaced by the present painting on canvas. A later restoration of this portrait painted out the minor figures in the original to emphasize the church's patron, Our Lady of Sorrows.

Welcome to St. Mary Basilica
Recognized as an architectural masterpiece among Catholic churches in the south, it is the spiritual home of a vibrant St. Mary Catholic community today. The construction of this place of worship was begun in 1842 as the Cathedral of the newly established Diocese of Natchez.

The St. Mary congregation takes pride in the basilica's colorful and prayerful setting, and welcomes visitors from near and distant places. The city of Natchez, on the Mississippi River and the birthplace of Mississippi, is a tourist destination because of its historic ante-bellum homes. St. Mary Basilica, also ante-bellum, is the city's central landmark.
Mission of St. Mary Basilica
St. Mary Basilica is spiritual home to approximately 2,000 Roman Catholics. It has provided Catholic Education through the Cathedral School system since 1853. The school’s (K-12) enrollment at present is approximately 600 students.  

Programs to enrich and support the sacredness of family life are a priority at St. Mary, as are programs of faith formation, community service, evangelization, youth ministry, and interfaith activity.
 
Inspirational liturgies, sacramental celebrations, the observance of important feast days, and leadership training for congregation members are highlighted. Much of St. Mary ministry is carried out by a cadre of dedicated volunteers.
 
No longer the Cathedral of the diocese, St. Mary congregation sees its mission not only as serving the local community but also as a support and resource for the ministry of smaller Catholic communities in Southwest Mississippi.

Cornerstone Laid
February 24, 1842
Dedication
December 25, 1843

Cathedral Until
June 6, 1977
Minor Basilica
September 25, 1999

Consecration
September 19, 1886

Mass Schedule
Monday - Friday: 8:00 am
Saturday Vigil: 4:00 pm Standard Time, 5:00 pm DST
Sunday: 10:00 am, Nursery
is provided.
Masses in the Natchez Area
Daily Readings
Reconciliation
Saturday: 3:30 pm Standard Time, 4:30 pm DST
Any time by appointment, call (601) 445-5616
Parish Office
Office Hours
Monday - Friday: 8:30 – 12:30, 1:30 – 4:30
Contact – Information
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