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St. Fidelis Church, Victoria

#11 of 58 in Historic Sites in Kansas
Must see · Religious Site · Tourist Spot
The Basilica of St. Fidelis, commonly known as The Cathedral of the Plains, is a Romanesque-style Roman Catholic parish church in Victoria, Kansas, United States. It was raised to the status of a Minor Basilica in 2014 and is also known as The Basilica of the Plains.HistoryThe church was built from 1908 to 1911. According to the church history, each member of the church who was 12 or older was asked to give $45 a year and six wagonloads of stone to help construct the building. The nickname The Cathedral of the Plains was bestowed by former presidential candidate William Jennings Bryan after he visited the town in 1912. Its 48 historic stained-glass windows were installed in 1916, by Munich Studios in Chicago, at a cost of $3,700, and now valued at more than $1 million. The church was added to the National Register in 1971.In 1994, the church began a series of restoration efforts. More than $265,000 was spent on weatherproofing the exterior, replastering and repainting the interior and updating the sound, electrical and heating systems. A marble floor was put in the sanctuary for $60,000, replacing the old carpeting and linoleum floors. The church roof was reshingled in 2006 for $137,000. In 2011, the church replaced the parking lot and sidewalks for $225,000, and spent $70,000 on repairing the plaster ceilings and walls that had cracked with age. A plastic covering was installed in the mid-1980s to protect each stained glass window from Kansas storms. It had grown opaque through the years and replaced with tempered glass in 2013.
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St. Fidelis Church reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 5.0
69 reviews
  • Stopped by and was amazed at the huge beautiful church. A ceremony was going on and did not interrupt but peeked in and looked awesome.  more »
  • You can feel a spiritual presence the second you walk in the door. This church was built between 1908-1911 and when you see how intricate and detailed it is inside it's hard to believe they...  more »
  • Stunning architecture, large stained glass, 14 carved panels, and an ornate alter, all with a rich history. They offer a few free educational materials including a guided audio tour, and a gift shop if you want a souvenir. Plus it's just a nice place to take respite from travelling - to rest your eyes from the road and your mind from the traffic and walk through the quiet peace of this beautiful gem along I-70.
  • Beautiful church where you don't expect it! The stain glass is worth coming to see alone. Lovely architecture. A nice detour off the 70.

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