Great Organ Soon to be Completed

Twenty-three years ago, the first phase of the installation of the Great Organ of the Cathedral was begun. Although it is visually impressive and appears complete, only 2/3 of the pipes were installed at that time. Even in its incomplete state, it was hailed as one of the most impressive pipe organs in the region and is perfectly enhanced by the acoustics of our Cathedral. 


Six years ago, we began a campaign to complete the organ. Within three years we met our goal. We were very fortunate to engage the original builder, Lively-Fulcher Organbuilders, to complete the instrument. 


In early June 2018, an interim organ console (a digital electronic organ with speakers) was installed near the organ, allowing us to continue to accompany our liturgies and events until the Great Organ is completed later this year. In late June 2018, a partial dismantling of the current organ began, and new chests and pipes will be installed during the summer. At times you will see scaffolding and some façade pipes missing. When the organ is complete this fall or early winter, you will notice dozens of sounds that you have never heard before. It will be as if whole sections of an orchestra that have been silent are now playing!

None of this would have been possible without the generous support of hundreds of parishioners and friends who have embraced the vision of a completed instrument and sacrificed to make it possible.

If you have questions on the completion of the organ, you may contact Tom Stehle at, who will try to answer them in updates here and in the parish bulletin. Read the May 2015 Washington Post feature on the Great Organ.