Thursday Doors – March 23, 2017

Thursday Doors is a weekly feature allowing door lovers to come together to admire and share their favorite door photos from around the world. Feel free to join in on the fun by creating your own Thursday Doors post each week and then sharing it, between Thursday morning and Saturday noon (North American eastern time), by using the blue link-up button below. 

Le Gesù Church and Concert Hall – Downtown Montréal

I swear folks I’m not trying to convert anyone, but it just seems that whenever I go on a doorscursion lately, the beautiful churches around here keep jumping out at me.

This week’s edition features the doors of Le Gesù Church and concert hall in downtown Montréal.

Despite having lived in the city for the first 40 years of my life, Le Gesù is in a part of downtown that I never really had reason to frequent. In fact I was not at all familiar with this place other than recognizing the name as a somewhat popular venue for local French language theater.

That’s right, until we stumbled across the place while walking around downtown last weekend, I didn’t even know there was a church here.

As we approached at street level we saw posters for some of their local upcoming shows and as I got closer I saw the name and thought to myself, ah so this is where the Le Gesù theatre is.

It wasn’t until I took a few steps back and then tried going around the place that it dawned on me: this place was just way too huge to simply be a small theater.

Let’s see: huge old stone building, large stone steps leading to enormous doors, a dome, stained glass windows and crosses everywhere; before thinking I blurted out, “Hey is this place a church too?”

Honey looked at me like I was from Mars and because she’s so much more civilized than me she simply replied, “Um yeah, since like forever….”

If the shoe had been on the other foot I know I probably would have replied something a bit more sarcastic like, “D’UH – great detective skills there Sherlock.”

She’s a keeper don’t ya think? 😉

Note to self: dome at the rear of building = probable church

Anyway, I clearly had me some researching to do 😀

According to the Wikipedia entry on the place Monsignor Ignace Bourget, second bishop of Montréal, wanted all churches in his diocese to replicate the architecture of Roman churches.

Gettin’ Iggy with it – Msgr. Ignace Bourget

I guess it a nice thing to do if you’ve got the money 🙂

This was reflected in the design of  Mary Queen of the World Cathedral which we looked at in posts a few months back here and here

Similarly, the Church of the Gesù was based on the Church of the Gesù in Rome. Construction began in 1864, and the church opened on July 10th, 1865.

The Jesuit-run Collège Sainte-Marie was built south of the church. It was demolished in 1975 and a hotel/office tower was built in its place, but Le Gesù was preserved and underwent extensive restorations in 1983.

Irish-American architect Patrick Keely developed plans that drew heavily on the Church in Rome. The Gesù in Montreal retained the Italian name of Jesus, found in its Roman counterpart.

Though not an exact replica of the one in Rome, it is nevertheless a very large church of about 4,400 square meters (47,000 sq ft) with a vault height of 22.9 meters (75 ft) above ground level. It is also the only entirely baroque-style church in Montréal.

The basement was originally designed as a 1200 seat amphitheater for the collège. Opened not long after the church in 1865, it is one of the oldest cultural centers in Montréal and it included an orchestra pit and a revolving stage.

Today after multiple redesigns and subdivisions, the main theater holds 425 seats with several smaller halls available to rent for performance art, meetings, and other functions. 

Judging by what we saw from the exterior we’re going to have to go back soon to see the inside of the church AND the theater, especially now that I know that it’s both 😀

As always I thank you for stopping by.

Want to join in on the fun and share your own Thursday Doors post with other door lovers? Click on the blue button below to add the link to your Thursday Doors post to our link-up list.

Don’t forget that if you share your blog posts on Twitter and Instagram, use the #ThursdayDoors hashtag to help others find you, and please do take a few minutes to visit some of the Thursday Door posts shared by others.

About Norm 2.0

World’s youngest grumpy old man & heart failure wonder boy. Interests: writing, woodworking, photography, travel, tennis, wine, and I know a bit about power tools.
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76 Responses to Thursday Doors – March 23, 2017

  1. reocochran says:

    This has so much to talk about, Norm! I liked the grillwork and wood in first door’s picture. The other angles and sides of the “Le Gesu” church building were fabulous.
    I could not believe the Roman statues on this!
    The Jesuit run college building was much more the kind I admire in the old, beautiful stonework and the doors showing such simple but sturdy features such as criss crosses. I liked the details in so many of the photos!
    I think you have indeed a “keeper” in your wife. 🙂 Take care and hope you have a wonderful week ahead of you.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. jazzytower says:

    Churches do tend to make a nice collection. These are really good to look at.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. treerabold says:

    amazing building! Isn’t it amazing how we can discover new things even in our hometowns?!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Norm 2.0 says:

      I’m discovering new stuff virtually every week – it’s so much fun 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Leah says:

        I’m not a city girl, but living somewhere with a seemingly endless supply of discoveries would be great! Each spring, when we return home, we do a little tour of the village to see what happened over winter, then that’s pretty much it for our surprises!

        I don’t know why, but I was a bit shocked by the amount of snow you still have. My mind immediately went to shovelling the terrible stuff when I saw the shot of the curved staircases!!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Great doors, Norm. I got a chuckle from your comment about not trying to convert anyone. I’m also attracted to interesting church architecture and doors. Greece is filled with beautiful and unique churches. I love them, but also am not trying to convert anyone. LOL.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Andrea R Huelsenbeck says:

    I love old churches, hate the modern custom of building plain churches that could double as a warehouse store…

    Liked by 1 person

  6. That’s cool that it’s both. I love the front doors.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Candy says:

    impressive find – and it only took a year to complete! Can you imagine how long it would take to build something of that size and quality these days?

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Beautiful building, Norm. I would never have taken that as a church. What a great piece of architecture.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. LucciaGray says:

    Doors will never be the same since taking part in your Thursday Door Challenge😁 I’m glad you’re still finding lovely doors even in your own part of the world. I couldn’t make it this week, but I’ve been checking out all the other lovely doors. Have a great weekend:)

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Nice finds, Norm! Great building and doors! It’s a good thing your wife confirmed the church part or you could have been attending a “theater” performance and wondering why the performance looks like a Mass 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Capt Jill says:

    nice doors and a really interesting building, I hope you’ll show us shots of the inside when you get a chance. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Joanne Sisco says:

    You just can’t help it, can you? Even when you’re not trying, you manage to stumble across a great find. I love the art deco doors of the theatre tucked in underneath the stone staircase and trio of mammoth green doors above it.

    The other thing that really struck me was – omg, you have a lot of snow!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Corina says:

    Great door selections today but I must say my favorite photo was of that staircase!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. ghostmmnc says:

    The church is a beautiful building! I especially like the photo of the stairs leading to the green door!… Here’s my entry for today…enjoy!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Norm 2.0 says:

      Thanks, glad you liked it 🙂
      For future reference there’s no need to put your link in the comments; as long as it’s on the link-up list. So much easier for me to find and visit everyone’s posts when the links are all in one place.
      Thanks again for playing – cheers 😀


  15. Beautiful doors! One of these days, I’ll be back in your beautiful city… but this time, I’ll pay more attention to the doors than I did before!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Nice set of doors from one of my favorite cities. I’m hoping we can get up there when the weather is a bit warmer. Cheers!

    Liked by 2 people

  17. graceunc says:

    haha, i think it’s funny you’d never seen this place before! here in springfield, IL, the town is so small that it’s almost impossible to find anything new. spectacular photos as usual!

    Liked by 1 person

  18. jesh stg says:

    Love that staircase! Yeah, you better keep your wife, otherwise you’ll be in a heap of trouble on Thurs. Doors (lol)….

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Gillian says:

    Wow! That’s quite a theatre Norm! Here’s my Thursday doors. Nowhere near as imposing as yours but still quite lovely I think.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. bikerchick57 says:

    Never mind the beautiful church doors…I really like your wife :-p

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Cee Neuner says:

    Excellent and gorgeous photos. But I would not want all that white stuff (snow). 😀 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  22. joey says:

    Yes, Honey does seem to be a keeper 🙂 Although, to be fair, lots of churches are no more, and new churches don’t always look like churches. I can understand your surprise.
    This building is pleasing to the eye, with such nice coloring. Both sets of front doors are dreamy!

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Vicky says:

    This is so nice, a church and theatre in a stunning building, arches, architraves, steps, wrought iron and some funky splashes of colour, highlighted by all that snow you still seem to be getting! Nice find…

    Liked by 1 person

  24. klara says:

    very impressive buildings and doors.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. What a find! It’s a gorgeous building, with beautiful doors, and the green trim with the stonework is lovely!

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Almost Iowa says:

    Never pass a Montreal church without clicking a picture, you know how we love them.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. conspicari says:

    Wow what a great building, love the Green doors. :>)

    Liked by 1 person

  28. Hi, I follow you on Twitter and IG, but have never participated in this challenge. However, I was on a walk this week and took a photo that suited the challenge, so I thought I would add it in.

    Liked by 1 person

  29. marianallen says:

    What a beautiful building! Great doors! And the arches, THE ARCHES! Those are the archiest arches EVER! Great find, Norm, and great shots!

    Liked by 1 person

  30. J Walters says:

    These are just beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

  31. Dan Antion says:

    These are beautiful doors, Norm but I am really drawn to the amazing details in the stone walls and the arches. The stone dentil molding in the second photo is stunning.

    Great selection today. You never have to apologize for bringing us a church, they often have some of the most amazing architecture and doors. I would have included this one in a heartbeat.

    Liked by 2 people

  32. slfinnell says:

    Even if I ever get to travel to Canada, I bet these are parts unknown to a lot of tourists. Great to see them here!

    Liked by 1 person

  33. Right… all I need now is to find the Church of the Gesù in Rome. I have no idea which one it is! Lovely images and story.

    Liked by 1 person

  34. ianbcross says:

    Montreal church doors are very solid and sturdy, really tough Christianity here. Never mind the remnants of snow at the door posts. Fantastic selection as usual. You may be interested that I have included a selection of doors from south Delhi this week.

    Liked by 1 person

  35. Amazing architecture. Your CN forefathers certainly knew how to construct a building that would still turn heads many years later. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  36. BeckyB says:

    hee hee . . .just guess other buildings could learn a lot from Church architecture!

    Liked by 1 person

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