Washington National Cathedral celebrates 115th anniversary; $115M raised for repairs

The Washington National Cathedral is celebrating its 115th anniversary this week and its leaders say they are making progress toward their fundraising goal that will help preserve the iconic D.C. structure for many more years to come.

The Cathedral's five-year 'A Cathedral for the Future' campaign has raised $115 million over the last three years. Officials say the funds will be used to support its mission programs and to make much-needed repairs. Among its most pressing preservation needs, the Cathedral says it will work to complete repairs on the estimated $38 million in damage caused by the 2011 earthquake.

Washington National Cathedral

Funds raised will also be used to support the opening of the new Virginia Mae Center. The center will be used to host multi-faith events and to explore art, music, and spiritual formation, leaders say.

The Cathedral's great organ, installed in 1938, will also be completely renovated using funds from the campaign. The restoration will maintain key original elements of the instrument, leaders say, while adding new, handcrafted additions. The refurbished organ will produce a louder, warmer sound, Cathedral officials say.

Washington National Cathedral

Others improvements include investments in digital technology, overhauling the Cathedral's audio system, safety measures and expanding the Cathedral's racial justice programming.

The Cathedral hopes to reach its $150 million fundraising goal over the next two years.