The St. Emil Church is the largest Catholic Church in Qingdao, Shandong Province. The church is located at Dexian Road. Local citizens of Qingdao used to call it the Catholic Church. Established in the early 1930s, the church was the largest Gothic architecture in Qingdao as well as a masterpiece of Christian architecture. The Qingdao Catholic Church was built in the early 1930s.
The construction of the church began in 1932 and ended in 1934. Covering an area of 2470 square meters, the church is built of yellow granites and ferroconcretes, and the fa?ade is carved with concise and graceful patterns. The grand and sober windows are half arciform with fluent lines. A huge rosace was set on the gate. There are red-tiled bell towers of over 56 meters high on each side of the main entrance with a cross of more than 4.5 meters high on the top. Inside each tower four great bells are hung. Once the bells ring, the sound can be heard miles away. Behind the entrance there is a roomy and bright hall of over 18 meters high, which can accommodate more than 1,000 people. Soft light passes through rosace. Two ambulatories stand on both east and west sides of the hall. There are two large altars and four small altars behind the hall. The eikon painted on the hall's vault and the dazzling lamplights make the church full of religious atmosphere.
The religious activities of the Catholic church are active. Worship ceremonies will be held on Sundays, when the hall is full of adherents, the priest presides the mass, and adherents sing fair-sounding anthems with the accompaniment of a piano, and pray devoutly. The Easter and Christmas are grand festivals for Catholicism. Ceremonious felicitation rites are held in the church every year with a passionate festive atmosphere.
Catholicism was firstly introduced to Qingdao in 1897 when the Germany force began to enter the city. In the spring of 1898, Germany missionaries built the first missionary place behind the Yaohou Palace at Taiping Road, recruiting new adherents and conducting religious activities.
From 1900 and 1902, Bai Mingde, a Germany priest, purchased a piece of land in Qufu Road and built the first Catholic Church in Qingdao. With increasing adherents and religious activities, people began to raise funds and planned to build a cathedral of over 100 meters high in Qiandao. According to the original plan, there is a round pavilion and a lookout, from which one can enjoy the landscape of mountain and sea in Qingdao. The design was directed by Germany architect Bi Louha. The planned cathedral was a top-ranking church in the oriental countries with grand shape and luxury interior.
For several reasons, the plan was changed dramatically. The church was located in the east side of the flourishing Zhongshan Road. The construction started in 1932 and was completed in 1934, covering an area of 2,470 square meters. The fa?ade is carved with concise and graceful patterns. The grand and sober windows are semi-arciform with fluent lines. There are red-tiled bell towers of 56 meters high on both sides of the main entrance with a cross of 4.5 meters high on the top. Behind the entrance is a roomy and bright hall of 18 meters high, which can accommodate more than 1,000 people. Two ambulatories stand on both the east and west sides of the hall. There are two large altars and four small altars behind the hall. The eikons are painted on the hall's vault.
In 1982, the church was reconstructed by the government and reopened. The religious activities of the Catholic Church are very active now.