St. Pierre Cathedral

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
St. Pierre Cathedral of Geneva
The Cathedral Church of St Peter
Cathédrale Saint-Pierre de Genève
St Pierre Cathedral (46717064755).jpg
St. Pierre Cathedral
St. Pierre Cathedral of Geneva is located in Switzerland
St. Pierre Cathedral of Geneva
St. Pierre Cathedral of Geneva
Location of St. Pierre Cathedral in Switzerland
46°12′4″N 6°8′55″E / 46.20111°N 6.14861°E / 46.20111; 6.14861Coordinates: 46°12′4″N 6°8′55″E / 46.20111°N 6.14861°E / 46.20111; 6.14861
DenominationProtestant Church of Geneva
Previous denominationRoman Catholic
WebsiteSt. Pierre Cathedral
StatusParish church
Founded4th century
DedicationPeter the Apostle
Functional statusActive
Heritage designationSwiss Inventory of Cultural Property of National and Regional Significance
The nave of St. Pierre Cathedral

St. Pierre Cathedral in Geneva, Switzerland, was built as a Roman Catholic cathedral, but became a Reformed Protestant Church of Geneva church during the Reformation. It is known as the adopted home church of John Calvin, one of the leaders of the Protestant Reformation. Inside the church is a wooden chair used by Calvin.


Although this has been the site of a cathedral (a church that is the seat of a bishop) since the fourth century, the present building was begun under Arducius de Faucigny, the prince-bishop of the Diocese of Geneva, around 1160, in Gothic style. The interior of the large, cruciform, late-gothic church was stripped of its rood screen, side chapels, and all decorative works of art, leaving a vast, white-washed interior that contrasts sharply with the interior of surviving medieval churches in countries that continued to be part of the Roman Catholic Church. A Neo-Classical the main facade was added in the 18th century. In the 1890s, Genevans redecorated a large, side chapel adjacent to the cathedral's man doors in polychrome, gothic revival style. The German painter Konrad Witz painted an altarpiece, the so-called St. Peter Altarpiece, for the cathedral in 1444, now in the Musée d'Art et d'Histoire, Geneva, which contains his composition, the Miraculous Draught of Fishes.[citation needed]

Currently, every summer a German Protestant minister is present, making it possible to hold bilingual services and meetings of both German and French Protestant worshippers.[citation needed]

Theodore Beza, French Calvinist Protestant theologian, reformer and scholar, and successor to John Calvin, was buried in St. Pierre in 1605.

On Whit Saturday, 30 May 2020, after nearly 485 years[1] a Catholic mass was to be celebrated in the cathedral as a symbol of ecumenical hospitality the first time again.[2] Because of COVID-19, the celebration was first postponed from 29 February 2020 to 30 May 2020, but could again not be celebrated because of the pandemic. The celebration was postponed to 2021.[3]

On 5 March 2022, the mass was finally celebrated in the cathedral.[4]


Chapelle of St. Pierre Cathedral
Strike tone
1 La Clémence 1902 H. Rüetschi, Aarau 2190 6238 g0 North
2 L'Accord 1845 S. Treboux, Vevey 1560 2080 c1 South
3 La Bellerive 1473 Nicolas Guerci 1400 1500 e1 North
4 La Collavine 1609 1140 1012 g1 South
5 L'Espérance 2002 H. Rüetschi, Aarau 930 475 a1 South
6 L'Eveil 1845 S. Treboux, Vevey 750 261 c2 South
7 Le Rappel 15th century 590 133 e2 South
I La Cloche des Heures 1460 1290 1610 e1 Spire
II Le Tocsin 1509 760 270 cis2 South


Further reading[edit]

  • Bonnet, Charles (February 1987), "The Archaeological Site of the Cathedral of Saint Peter (Saint-Pierre), Geneva", World Archaeology, Taylor & Francies, Ltd, 18 (3): 330–340, doi:10.1080/00438243.1987.9980010, JSTOR 124589


  1. ^ After the temporary suspension of the Mass by a city council decision on August 10, 1535, no Catholic Mass had taken place. (Publication de L'Association pour la Restauration de Saint-Pierre, Saint-Pierre Ancienne Cathédrale de Genève, Geneva, 1982, p. 67)
  2. ^ Catholic Mass in Cathedral of the Reformed (in German), Deutschlandfunk, 31 May 2020.
  3. ^ Still waiting for a historical event (German), Domradio, 2 June 2020
  4. ^

External links[edit]