The Cathedrals of Portugal are an essential fabric of memory and identity, deeply characterizing the territory and its people, from the North to the South of the country, from the coast to the interior, and including the Autonomous Regions of Madeira and the Azores. Various vicissitudes, more or less aware, have hitherto prevented this heritage - relevant in the whole national community and admittedly singular - from being considered as a coherent whole, thereby enhancing not only the unequal treatment from monument to monument, but also the interventions, many times casuistic or in deficit, all within the same patrimonial set.
Coinciding with the affirmation of the priceless religious, historical, artistic, cultural, symbolic and patrimonial value of Portuguese Cathedrals, the Ministry of Culture and the Portuguese Episcopal Conference signed on June 30, 2009, a cooperation agreement with the view to implement the ROTA DAS CATEDRAIS project.
This project that seeks to give these monuments a global and joint accountable attention, assumes itself as the facilitator of a concerted, contracted, planned, judicious and demanding action, not only to help situations of more evident degradation, but above all to achieve the enabling of the monuments through a qualified intervention of recovery and conservation of priceless patrimonial values.
With a view to implementing a cultural offer of excellence, based on heritage assets and allied with a careful cultural program, capable of the returning monuments to the community and thus involving it in the protection and enhancement of the Cathedrals, the project also aims, through the joint accountability of all the players involved, to promote a collective selfesteem and shared care in the face of a plural and multifaceted heritage carrying a profound identity, the living memory of a people.
The recovery and enhancement of the Cathedrals presupposes the firm intention of the institutions involved to share the assets thus requalified with the community, in its broadest sense, whether through visiting services and excellent cultural offerings, through museum spaces or other areas, such as archives and libraries, or through a demanding cultural program that makes a decisive contribution to its enhancement.
The project ROTA DAS CATEDRAIS is associated with monuments to Catholic worship with the canonical status of Cathedral or co-Cathedral, as well as the ancient See of Elvas, Old See of Coimbra and See of Silves.
Source: Rota das Catedrais