This is a big, Catholic deal. Really!
12 Bishops and 3 Cardinals from across the nation are coming to Knoxville for the historic Groundbreaking of the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

The Diocese of Knoxville will mark the start of a new era on Sunday, April 19, 2015 when Bishop Richard F. Stika, Catholic leaders from around the world, and the Governor of Tennessee join together to break ground for a new Sacred Heart Cathedral at 711 S. Northshore Drive, Knoxville.

The groundbreaking event will start at 12:30 p.m. on the front lawn at Sacred Heart Cathedral.  The ceremony will include prayers and a blessing of the new cathedral site and a blessing of the cornerstone that will be used in construction. An outline of the new worship space will be painted on the lawn, giving those in attendance an idea of the size of the structure, which is scheduled for completion in 2017.

Joining Bishop Stika on stage will be leaders from the Catholic Church, including Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York, Cardinal William Levada, Prefect Emeritus of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the most senior of the nine congregations of the Roman Curia in the Vatican and Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop Emeritus of Philadelphia.
Additionally, Governor Bill Haslam, Rep. John J. Duncan, Jr., Rep. Chuck Fleischmann, Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero and Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett are expected to be in attendance.

The groundbreaking ceremony will last until approximately 1:15 p.m. with a reception to follow on the Pavilion behind Sacred Heart Cathedral School.

Prior to the groundbreaking event, Sunday Mass will be celebrated at 11:00a.m. inside the current Sacred Heart Cathedral. Overflow seating will be in the Sacred Heart Gymnasium. Cardinal Justin Rigali, who is celebrating his 80th birthday on April 19, will be the principal celebrant at Mass.

Additionally, here are two other amazing events taking place on Saturday, April 18th, the day before the groundbreaking:

Saturday, April 18 

Following Jesus ConferenceFollowing Jesus Graphic

Knoxville Catholic High School and All Saints Catholic Church

9:30-11:00 am:  Curtis Martin, founder of Fellowship of Catholic University Students

1:30 pm:  Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York

2:30 pm:  Mass celebrated by Cardinal Timothy Dolan with Bishop Richard Stika

A Conversation with the Cardinals

CCFinalThe Historic Tennessee Theatre

7:00-9:00 pm

Bishop Richard Stika will emcee and moderate this revealing and entertaining discussion on Catholicism with three distinguished leaders of the Catholic Church. Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Cardinal William Levada and Cardinal Justin Rigali have cast votes in recent papal elections and will offer an inside view on the beauty of the Catholic faith. This event is approaching a sell-out. Visit for tickets.

For more information, contact Pam Rhoades, Cathedral Communications Director: 865.207.5884