A church is a holy place, a building used for public Christian worship. Church” originates from the Greek word ekklesia which is characterized as “an assembly” or “called-out ones.” The root importance of “church” isn’t that of a building The root meaning of “church” is not that of a building, but of people. However, today we will talk about the top 20 largest churches in the world.
1) St.Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City, 15160 square meters
This is the largest and one of the most famous churches in the world. With an internal area of 15160 square meters, stretches over 186 meters in length. The beautiful central dome has a height of 136 meters. It can accommodate 20000 people in an instance. It was built in 320 AD by Emperor Constantine, redesigned and enlarged by Pope Nicolas V in the 15th century. Although there is not much to talk about this church it contains 140 statues of various saints. It took them 41 years to finish sculpting. There is a holy door in the cathedral that only opens during holy years.
2) Basilica of the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida, Brazil, 12000 square meters.
With an area of 12000 square meters, The Basilica of the national shrine of our lady of Aparecida is the world’s second-largest church. It is located in the city of Aperidica, Brazil. This church can hold almost 45000 people at once. The church was built between 1834 to 1888. However, it is recently developed. With a magnificent view, this church has towers of 102meters.
Image Source: Wikimedia
3) Seville Cathedral, Seville, Spain,11520 square meters.
The enormous interior is fully decorated with gold. The cathedral was constructed between 1428 and 1528 to built honor and pay tribute to the power and wealth of the city. The vast cathedral was designed by the French architect Rouen Cathedral. One of the biggest eye laying points of the cathedral is 45 wooden carved scenes from the life of Jesus Christ. With an area of 11520 square meters, this church comes at no. 3 on the list of the top 10 biggest churches in the world.
4) Cathedral of Saint John the Divine, New York, United States, 11200 square meters
It has an internal area of 11,200 square meters and a length of 183.2 meters. Designed in 1888 construction started in 1892. Two intelligent architects, George Heins and Christopher Grant Lafarge designed this. Construction was paused due to World War II. A whole main door of Saint John the divine is made of bronze. The large window made of 10000 pieces of colored stained glass just adds up the beauty of the place and it is also the fifth-largest window in the world.
5) Milan Cathedral, Milan, Italy, 10186 square meters
With an internal area of 10186 square meters, this church can hold around 40,000 people at a time. This magnificent church comes at 5th on the list of largest churches in the world. The construction started in 1386 and it took more than five centuries to finish the construction. With a spare of Milan stands at a height of 108.8 meters, and it is also mounted with a golden statue of the Virgin Mary.
6) Basilica of Our Lady of Lichen, Konin, Poland, 10090 square meters
With a ground area of 10090 square meters and a height of 141.2 meters, Basilica of our lady of Lichen is the 6th largest church in the world. This glorious church is located in the Konin city of Poland. The construction of the church started in 1994 and finished in 2004. The construction was funded by pilgrims’ donations. With a total of 365 windows and 52 doors and 12 columns, signifies this wonderful church denotes days, weeks, months respectively.
7) Liverpool Cathedral, Liverpool, United Kingdom, 9687 square meters
With an internal area of 9687 square meters, this church is the largest church in the whole United Kingdom. This church is 189meters wide and 101 meters in height, constructed in a period of 74years i.e. 1904 to 1978. It has set a world record of having the highest and heaviest peal. It has a history; Giles Gilbert Scott always tried very hard to be a great architect. After a lot of struggles, he finally managed to Scott submitted an entirely new design for the main body of the cathedral. His original outline had two towers at the west end and a solitary the reexamined design required a single central tower 85.344 meters (280.00 ft) high, finished with a lantern and flanked by twin transepts. Unfortunately, due to the First World War, work was limited as a shortage of manpower stroke them. Later in 1960, Scott died. However, it was later handed over to Dean and Chapter in April 1961.
8) Church of the holy trinity, Santarem, Portugal, 8700 square meters
This church is the largest church in Portugal. With an internal area of 8700 square meters, this church comes at no. 8th on the list of the top 10 largest churches in the world. This large church can hold around 9k devotees at an instance. This church is dedicated to the Virgin Mary. It is just a recently constructed church; it was built within the duration of the years 2004 and 2007. The architect who created this is Mr.Alexandros Tombazis.
9) Basilica Of Our Lady Of Pillar, Aragon, Spain, 8318 square meters
As indicated by primordial nearby convention, not long after the torturous killing of Jesus, Saint James was gospelizing the general population in Spain, however, he was crippled on account of the disaster of his central goal. Custom holds that on second January 40 AD, while he was somewhere down in petition by the banks of the Ebro, the Mother of God appeared to him and gave a section of Jasper and taught him to build a Church in her respect: “This place is to be my home, and this picture and segment will be the title and altar of the temple that you shall build.”
The final works of pillars of the church completed in the 20th century. With an internal area of 8318 square meters, this church comes at no. 9th on the list of top 10 largest churches in the world. There are four great towers and eleven vaults in the Church. The statue of the Virgin Mary is around 15 inches and situated in the sacred house of prayer of the Church. Today El Pillar cathedral is one of the most visited pilgrimage centers in Spain.
10. Florence Cathedral, 8,300 square meters
Also known as Cattedrale Santa Maria del Fiore, however, popularly known as the Duomo is the main church of Florence, Italy. The Italian Gothic building was built in the seventh-century church of Santa Reparata. The new cathedral church is of more importance and significantly larger than the previous one. Florence Cathedral was designed to be the world’s largest Catholic church and the construction began at the end of the thirteenth century by Arnolfo di Cambio. The structure of the dome is beautiful with a height of 35.5 meters above the tambour which is 54 meters above the ground level.
11) Ulm Minster, Ulm, Germany, 8260 square meters
This church is 161.5m long, it is located in Ulm city of Germany. Apparently, it is the tallest church in the world. With an internal area of 8260 square meters, this comes at number 10th on the list of top 10 largest churches in the world. With a total of 768steps, there comes the top of this church and a magnificent view of Ulm city. It took around 500years to build this church. The construction started in 1377 On 31st May 1890 it was finally completed.
It is intentionally constructed this tall to symbolize a gesture of the way to heaven. In 1817 the frescos inside were secured by painting the walls grey. However, in 1844 the work of construction was reactivated. After a period of repairs enduring until 1856, the central nave was balanced out by the expansion of flying buttresses. Then the small steeples beside the choir were built without medieval plans. Finally, the principle steeple was finished, changing the accessible medieval arrangement in making it around ten meters taller.
12. Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe, 8,167 square meters
Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe is the Roman Catholic church located in Mexico in the north of Mexico City. The church has a cloak containing the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. It is expected to build in 1709 near the hill of Tepeyac where it is believed that the Virgin Mary appeared to Saint Juan Diego Cuauhtlatoatzin. The whole site is also known as La Villa de Guadalupe and popularly known as La Villa and have various churches and related buildings built on the site.
13. Basilica of the Sacred Heart, 8,000 square meters
The church is situated in the Notre Dame, Indiana, the USA is a Roman Catholic church situated in the campus of the University of Notre Dame and also serves as the mother church of the Congregation of Holy Cross in the United States. It has 44 large stained glass windows and the murals completed the church over a span of 17-year period by the Vatican painter Luigi Gregori. The basilica bell tower is 218 feet high making it the tallest University chapel in America.
14. Cathedral of Our Lady, 8,000 square meters
Cathedral of Our Lady is a Roman Catholic church located in Antwerp, Belgium. It is believed that the first stage of construction was ended in 1521. The architects were the Jan and Pieter Appelmans. The beautiful church contains significant works by the Baroque painter Peter Paul Rubens and also paintings of the Otto van Veen, Jacob de Backer, and Marten de Vos.
15. Rio de Janeiro Cathedral, Brazil- 8000 square meters
It is also known as the Metropolitan Cathedral of Rio de Janeiro or the Cathedral of St. Sebastian of Rio de Janeiro is the most important seat for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of São Sebastião do Rio de Janeiro. One of the largest churches in the world is located in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and it is dedicated to Saint Sebastian who is a patron saint of Rio de Janeiro.
16. Basilica of Our Lady of Peace, Ivory Coast- 7989 square meters
The foundation stone of the Church was laid in 1985 and the overall construction was completed by 1989. If you can analyze, the church looks similar to the Basilica of St. Peter in Vatican City. It is a large church, however, it can surpass many other churches in terms of internal volume.
17. Hagia Sophia, Turkey- 7960 square meters
One of the largest churches in the world began as a religious center, however, nowadays, it serves as a museum in Istanbul, Turkey. It was designed as a very large dome and it is termed as one of the histories of architecture. This is the largest cathedral in the world for the next 1000 years. Later, the mosque was closed in the year 1931, and it was reopened after four years until the Republic of Turkey as a museum.
18. San Petronio Basilica, Italy- 7920 square meters
One of the world’s largest churches in the world is 132 meters long and 60 meters wide along with 45 meters high. The construction of the church began in 1390 and it is believed that the architect was Antonio di Vincenzo. The church hosted a seminal event of the 16th century known as the coronation of Charles V to Holy Roman Emperor by Pope Clement VII on February 24, 1530.
19. Cologne Cathedral, Germany- 7914 square meters
The laying of the church started in 1248 and it was completed in the year 1880, 632 years. ITt is believed that 1880, 632 years later and the height of the Cathedral is believed to be 157,38 meters. The external length of the cathedral is approximately 144,58 meters and the width is 86.25 meters. It is also said that this is the tales building in the word between 1880 and 1884.
20. St Paul’s Cathedral, United Kingdom- 7,875 square meters
It is believed that the church was built back in 604 AD. This is one of the biggest doms in the world at 366 feet high and it is home to te pieces of many different periods. It is believed in the year 1723, the prolific British architect was laid to rest in his own masterpiece.
These are the largest churches in the world. Do post your comments.