The Cathedral of St. John the Divine
The cathedral’s stained-glass windows above the High Alter in the Sanctuary are an inspiring and uplifting focal point for congregants and tourists alike.
The Cathedral of St. John the Divine is a stunningly beautiful historical landmark that sits on a hilltop in St. John’s and is the seat of the Diocese of the North Eastern Caribbean and Aruba. Originally built in 1681, earthquakes in 1683 and 1745 destroyed the first two church structures. The current cathedral opened in 1848 and actively served the Anglican community until it was forced to close in 2010 due to years of hurricane, earthquake, and termite damage.
A multi-year, multi-million-dollar restoration effort began that year, replacing the church’s foundation, roof, and pews, followed by a long list of other major and necessary repairs. The Mill Reef Fund contributed annually during the first years of renovation, but in 2018 it substantially increased its commitment by financing the restoration of the cathedral’s crown jewel: the spectacular stained-glass windows above the High Altar in the Sanctuary.
In 2019, MRF also funded replacement of the worn and faded wooden plaques beside the stained-glass windows, and repair and replacement of more than 70 windows that were cracked or falling out of rotten frames.
The Covid pandemic decimated the hospitality industry in Antigua and Barbuda and many people were out of work and struggling to make ends meet. Mill Reef partnered with St. John the Divine to provide relief packages to needy members of the congregation and community at that time, and recipients commented on the size, the constancy, and consistency of the generous packages.