Mother Church


The Mother Church of Santa Cruz is located in the Parish of Santa Cruz, one of the five Parishes of Lagoa, located on the south coast of São Miguel Island.

The Mother Church, dedicated to Santa Cruz, was built in the 16th century, and its front and tower were erected in the year 1844. It is also worth noting that in its interior the Manueline style predominates, visible in the vaults of the main chapel and Chapel of the Blessed Sacrament.

Based on some studies, and if we use the data collated by Dr. Gaspar Frutuoso and Father João José Tavares, we can affirm that the Christian dynamics in Santa Cruz of Lagoa will have started from the 1450s.

In 1518, the church already existed well built, however, during the first half of the sixteenth century, the church of Santa Cruz should still be a small space, because in 1526 there was only one priest, Father Sebastiao Fernandes.

Since then the population has grown and in 1555 the church already had as priests a priest and Father João de Évora, who was his first vicar.

Probably the first building of the church of Santa Cruz would have been destroyed to give place to a more imposing religious space: a matrix that corresponded to the dignity of the Christian population that lived there, but also of all the faithful who passed through the Lagoa.

Mor Chapel

The Church had undergone several transformations, both inside and outside. For the works that were within his competence, the revenues that the Church had from the rental of its properties, the graves, and the cloths of the church were spent, and the fines and bells of the dead and feasts were also paid.

In the 16th century, the vaults of the main chapel were built in Manueline style. Moreover, the Mother Church had the Altars of Saint Antony; Saint Peter; Our Lady of Rosary; Good Jesus (removed in 1844 and replaced by the image of St. Joseph); Our Lady of the Conception (replaced in the nineteenth century by Our Lady of Lourdes, an offer of Father João José Tavares) and Saint Sebastian . In century XVIII was founded the altar of San Michaell, whose image was later changed to the Altar-mor; and the altar of the Lord of the steps, of great devotion, and the pulpit was added, which came from the church of the old convent of St. Francis of Ponta Delgada.

These transformations inside the church were accompanied by multiple works of conservation and rebuilding. The first took place between 1583 and 1586. In 1813, new repairs were carried out in the main chapel, made with tile that came from Santa Maria island, and in 1844 the current front and tower were erected.

All these transformations did not alter the magnificence of this church. (*)


(*) Santa Cruz, V Centenário de Vivência Cristã, Susana Goulart Costa, 2007


Interior of the Church



Lord tied to the Column
Holy sacrament
Our Lady of Rosario
Sacred heart of Jesus
Lord of the Steps
Saint Teresinha



Public-displayed Collection at the Mother Church of Lagoa

Serviço Pastoral de Apoio a Pessoas Surdas