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The historic cathedra, or bishop’s chair, and bishop suffragan’s chair of the Diocese of Los Angeles have been moved to their new home in the Cathedral of St. John at Figueroa and Adams in Los Angeles. The cathedra is at left; the bishop suffragan’s chair at far right. Photo: Chris Tumilty

Using a crane, workers carefully remove the hand-carved canopy, which weighs about 500 pounds, from the cathedra to prepare for its journey from St. Paul’s Commons to St. John’s Cathedral. Photo: Chris Tumilty

THE HISTORIC CATHEDRA of the Bishop of Los Angeles and original chair of the Bishop Suffragan of Los Angeles journeyed Oct. 18 to St. John’s Cathedral, taking their places near the high altar after 25 years in Echo Park at the Cathedral Center of St. Paul, now St. Paul’s Commons.

St. John’s is the fourth location of the chairs, which were custom made for St. Paul’s Cathedral on Figueroa Street, residing there from 1924 until 1980, when earthquake damage led to demolition of the buildings. The chairs were then displayed at the former Diocesan House from 1980 to 1994.

Hand-carved by an actor who portrayed Christ in Germany’s world-famous Oberammergau Passion Play, the cathedra’s upper panels depict scenes of the apostles and Christ in action, including a rendering of St. Paul being freed from jail by an earthquake. The cathedra also features inlaid wood dating from the year 1070 and once part of England’s Winchester Cathedral.

Transfer of the cathedra and suffragan’s chair was welcomed by vestry action of the cathedral parish at the invitation of Bishop Diocesan John Harvey Taylor. Transfer by O & H Moving was overseen by Canon Luis Garibay, St. Paul’s Commons building supervisor, and Canon for Common Life Bob Williams.