Fodor's Expert Review Catedral Metropolitana de Nossa Senhora da Aparecida
The city's cathedral, considered one of Niemeyer's masterpieces, was finished in 1967. From outside, what is visible is a circular structure—a bundle of 16 concrete "fingers" arching skyward. For some, it resembles a crown of thorns. Large panes of stained glass supported by the concrete structure shelter the nave, leaving it awash in natural light. Inside, Os Anjos (The Angels)—an aluminum sculpture by Brazilian artist Alfredo Ceschiatti—hovers above the altar. The city's first Mass was held at the Praça do Cruzeiro, on May 3, 1957; the cruz (cross) used is now here at the cathedral. The building's entrance is guarded by four majestic bronze statues, also by Ceschiatti, Os Evangelistas (The Evangelists). The outdoor carillon is a gift of the Spanish government.