ST JAMES CATHEDRAL
In 1828, Reverend Alexander Denny was appointed Senior Civil Chaplain. One of his first tasks was to repair the roof of the powder magazine and erect an octagonal spire upon building in order to have an appearance of a church. On 25th December 1831 the restored church was opened for divine service.
In 1846, as the church was too small to accommodate the increasing congregation of soldiers, English civilians and others, two wings were added. In 1850, the church’s ground was fenced, the iron railings together with the gates were completed in 1851.
SOME INTERESTING EVENTS IN THE CATHEDRAL
On 21st June 1897 a Service was held to commemorate the Sixtieth anniversary of the Queen Victoria’s reign.
On 21st June 1900, a Special Service was held to mark the Bicentenary of the S.P.G. (Society of the propagation of the Gospel)
On the 2nd February 1901, a solemn Memorial Service was held, the day of the burial of the Queen Victoria.
On the 17th August 1935, a Civic Service was held to mark the Bicentenary Celebration of the founding of the Town of Port-Louis
On the 24th May (Empire Day) 1936 a Stone from Canterbury Cathedral, England, was placed in the Porch of the Cathedral to mark the link with the Mother Church of the Anglican Communion.
On 26th June 1950, a Diocesan Eucharist and a Civic Service were held to mark the Centenary of the Consecration of the Cathedral.
On the 25th January 1952 a wooden box with a glass front, containing a cross of nails from Coventry Cathedral, England, after it had been bombed during the war was formally received by Archdeacon Dawson, Vicar-General.
On 21st November 1965, a Corporate Communion Service and a Civic Service were held to mark the visit of the Archbishop of Canterbury, His Grace Dr. Michael Ramsey and Mrs. Ramsey.
ST JAMES CATHEDRAL
On 6th June 1812 Reverend H. Shepherd called fort tenders for the construction of a church in Port Louis. The first governor Sir R. T. Farquhar had given the site of an old French Powder Magazine to the Anglican Community. It was difficult to demolish the massive building which had nine-foot thick walls.
1818 and 1819 were years of violent cyclones which caused considerable damage and hardship to the Mauritian economy. The Powder Magazine was used as a church though not being properly fitted and furnished.
The history of the Anglican Church starts with the coming of the British when the island capitulated to General Abercrombie on 3rd December 1810. A large number of soldiers and sailors regularly attended divine service in the barracks on Sundays. A civil Chaplaincy of Mauritius was created under Royal Letters Patent.
On 6th May 1812, Reverend H. Shepherd was appointed as first Civil Chaplain. His works were mostly among the indigenous creoles and free blacks. His desire was to see a free school for their children and the gospel translated into the Malagasy tongue.
Under the chaplaincy of Reverend Alexander Denny the government was encouraged to offer education to children of ex-slaves. The role of the Church was to help Government in establishing Schools. Through his persistent efforts Government was forced to give its official sanction so that private schools and the Royal College be opened to all sections of the community