Esglesia de Santa Catalina de Siena (Church of Santa Catalina de Siena)

Church in Palma

Església De Santa Catalina De Siena, Palma
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Z thomas

The Church of Santa Catalina de Siena, located on Carrer de Sant Miquel, is a medieval temple and one of the oldest in Palma. Its origins trace back to the founding efforts of Joan Baptista Despuig, a member of the Order of Santiago, who rests within the church, close to the altar. Originally, this church was an integral part of the Santa Catalina de Siena convent and was constructed upon the grounds of an ancient Muslim mosque. In the 13th century, this mosque, with some modifications, served as an initial Christian place of worship before the construction of a new Gothic-style church commenced a century later.

The church was dedicated to Santa Catalina, a 14th-century nun actively engaged in the affairs of the Catholic Church. She played a pivotal role in convincing Pope Gregory XI to relocate the Holy See back to Rome.

In 1680, Francisco Herrera oversaw the church’s transformation into an Italian-style structure. This renovation included the expansion of space and the reorientation of the main entrance toward Sant Miquel street. While the church retained its typical Gothic single nave layout with side chapels, a trapezoidal apse, and a half-barrel roof, its interior was distinctly adorned in the Baroque style. This reconstruction was carried out in conjunction with the establishment of the Dominican Monastery of Santa Catalina in Ciutat de Mallorca in 1661.

Despite being declared a Historic Monument in 1964, the residential portion of the monastery was unfortunately demolished just two years later. In 2002, the church was handed over to the Russian Orthodox parish of Natividad Cristo (the Nativity of Christ), affiliated with the Moscow Patriarchate, marking an interesting chapter in its history.


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Visiting Esglesia de Santa Catalina de Siena (Church of Santa Catalina de Siena)

Address: Església de Santa Catalina de Siena, Carrer de Sant Miquel, Palma, Spain
Duration: 20 minutes

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