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Greek Orthodox Cathedral of St Luke

The Greek Orthodox Cathedral of St. Luke the Evangelist lies in the Dowanhill district of Glasgow behind Notre Dame High School, 2½ miles (4 km) northwest of the city centre. Built as the Belhaven United Presbyterian Church in 1877 by local architect James Sellars (1843-88), it is a novel design in Normandy Gothic with tall lancet windows said to have been inspired by Dunblane Cathedral. The church closed in 1960 but the Greek community soon purchased the building with a generous donation provided by hotel entrepreneur Sir Reo Stakis (1913 - 2001). It was consecrated by the Archbishop of Thyateira and Great Britain, in the presence of the Lord Provost of Glasgow and other dignitaries.

It was elevated to the status of a cathedral during a service conducted by Nicholas VI, Orthodox Patriarch of Alexandria, on the 24th May 1970 and remains the only Orthodox Cathedral in Scotland. The fine stained glass is by Stephen Adam and dates from 1877. The interior has been decorated with Byzantine iconography by George Tombazis, while retaining the original light fittings, furniture and richly stencilled roof timbers.

The adjacent hall, attached by a low arcade, accommodates a Greek School. Today the cathedral not only serves the Greek and Cypriot community, but also other Orthodox communities in Scotland such as Russians and Serbs. His All-Holiness Bartholomew I, spiritual leader of the world orthodox churches, visited the cathedral on the 7th July 1996 while in Scotland to receive an honorary degree from the University of Edinburgh.


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