Plaza and gardens of the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels
are designed to welcome visitors on a daily basis. They provide
an inviting setting not only for a multitude of liturgical uses,
but also for civic and cultural events, informal gatherings,
and solitary prayer and contemplation.
visitors enter from the parking garage or the Shepherds
Gate on Temple Street, they come to the Lower Plaza. The Shepherds
Gate, or sheepgate, is a reference to Jesus Christ, the Shepherd
of His flock, who welcomes all. A Grand Staircase leads to the
Upper Plaza and a full view of the Cathedral.
Cathedral Plaza Cafe opens onto a tree-shaded patio with tables
chairs. A spacious gift shop welcomes browsing and the purchase
of items, such as vintage wine, prepared especially for the
and plant species in the Plaza and around the Cathedral grounds was
chosen for one of several reasons: their Scriptural meanings, Catholic
garden traditions, especially as represented in the Franciscan Missions
of California, their significance in the Liturgical Calendar and in
the diverse cultural communities of the Archdiocese. Thus, for example,
the twelve King Palm trees, emblematic of Christs triumphant entry
into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, lead us to the Bronze Doors of the Cathedrals
entrance. The Olive Garden is a grove of olive trees, whose branches
have traditionally been symbols of peace.