Barcelona’s Sagrada Familia finally becomes a church

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For decades tourists have visited the twisting spires of Barcelona’s iconic Sagrada Familia church, but 128 years after construction began Catholic faithful worshipped there for the first time on Sunday.

Pope Benedict XVI celebrated Mass to give his official blessing to the church designed by architect Antoni Gaudi, whose sculptural masterpieces dot the city in the region of Catalonia.

While work is not scheduled to finish for many more years on the intricate and colourful Sagrada Familia, enough had been done to welcome the pontiff, including installing last minute stained-glass windows.

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This post was last updated: Nov. 8, 2010