Coming to Kontum City, there is an address which tourist should not miss, that is Wooden Cathedral. The cathedral worships Mother Mary. It is beautiful and unique and has the age of more than 100 years. According to historical documents, in the 19th mix-century, missionaries started building wooden churches in Vietnam including Wooden Cathedral in Kontum City. The first cathedral is built from small timbers, bamboos, and thatch in 1870. The Christians are more and more, so the Priest Giuse Decrouille led local Christians to build the second cathedral between 1913 and 1918. In spite of through many ups and downs of history, the cathedral has not still been damaged.
Wooden Cathedral in Kontum is a masterpiece. It is designed according to Roman architecture style and stilt house style of Bana ethnic group. The cathedral is a closed structure consisting of chapel, guesthouse, exhibition, communal house. Besides, there is an orphanage, a tailor workshop, a brocade workshop and a carpentry workshop. The pillars are made from a kind of wood having black-brown color. The ceiling and the wall is built from soil mixing with straw according to the way making traditional houses of central people. On the wall is colored glass pictures about Jesus Christ and Mother which become bright when having the sunshine passing. The park area has a statue of Mother holding Baby Jesus made from wood. It is carved according to the style simple of the highland ethnic minorities. The cross and other decorated things inside and outside of the cathedral are made from tree roots making the space full of mountain and forest style.
It is possible to visit Wooden Cathedral whenever. If you come in the spring, you will see flower roads making the cathedral become more beautiful. If you come on Christmas occasion, you meet thousands of Christians of many ethnic groups. Of them, there are people staying in the vacant ground on the right even whole a week to attend the celebration. Not far from the Cathedral, there is Kontum seminary built between 1935 and 1938, having the architecture similar to the cathedral, but the size is bigger. Passing the gate, tourists feel comfortable because 2 plumeria lines spreading shadow and perfume along the road going to the seminary. On the second floor of the seminary, there is a traditional exhibition displaying in detail about the history of mission in Kontum since the 19th mix-century, consisting of many artifacts, autographs, pictures and so on.
Wooden Cathedral in Kontum is an ancient cathedral. The cathedral has a special architecture style. It is one of the most famous cathedrals in Vietnam. If you have a chance to travel to Kontum City, spend time visiting this site.