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The main altar at St. Raphael's Cathedral, Dubuque, Iowa. Contained within the altar is the box containing the remains of Saint Cessianus.

Saint Cessianus (ca. 295 - 303) is a Roman Catholic saint and martyr. At the age of eight, he was martyred during the persecutions of the Roman emperor Diocletian in 303.


Pope Gregory XVI presented Bishop Mathias Loras with the remains of St. Cessianus in 1838. Bishop Loras brought the remains with him to the United States.[1] The remains were placed within a side altar in the new St. Raphael's Cathedral, in Dubuque, Iowa.[2]

After renovations carried out in the mid-1980s at St. Raphael's Cathedral were completed, it was decided to place the remains of St. Cessianus in the new main altar.[3] On November 23, 1986, the wooden box containing the remains of St. Cessianus was installed, during Mass, in the altar where they currently reside.


  1. ^ Thomas Craughwell. "St. Cecilia and the History of the Roman Catacombs". National Catholic Register. Retrieved 2019-09-02.
  2. ^ Joseph Frazier. "The WPA Guide to 1930s Iowa". Federal Writers' Project. Retrieved 2015-05-25.
  3. ^ Craughwell, Thomas J., "Cessianus", Saints Preserved, Crown Publishing Group, 2011 ISBN 9780307590749