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History

The St.Joseph’s Cathedral, formerly known as “The St.Joseph’s Church”, has been witnessing the transformation of Abu Dhabi Emirate ever since its inception. Carrying a message from His Holiness Pope John XXIII to the former Ruler, His Highness Sheikh Shakhbut Al Nahyan, the 1st emissary, Rev.Fr.Eugene Mattioli, OFM Cap., landed in Abu Dhabi in 1962. As directed by Sheikh Shakhbut, Fr.Mattioli found-out a location for the Church in north-west of Abu Dhabi Island, presently known as Corniche Area. The location found-out by Fr.Mattioli being in the area reserved for residence, at the initiative of Sheikh Shakhbut, a Church was constructed on the Corniche road of Abu Dhabi Island on February 19, 1965, naming after St.Joseph. His Excellency Bishop Bernard G. Gremoli, OFM Cap., the VIIIth Vicar Apostolic of Arabia, arrived in Abu Dhabi on March 21, 1976. Constructing many basic infrastructure through-out the Vicariate, at the kind advice of His Highness Sheikh Zayed Al Nahyan, the then President of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), His Excellency Bishop Bernard G. Gremoli reconstructed the Church on February 25, 1983 at the present location in Mushrif area as Cathedral. With the retirement of His Excellency Bishop Bernard G. Gremoli, His Excellency Bishop Paul Hinder, OFM Cap., was ordained as the IXth Vicar Apostolic of Arabia, on January 30, 2005.

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