About the man who spent 60 years building his cathedral

• At the age of 36, in the year 1961, Don Justo Gallego Martinez contracted tuberculosis and was forced to leave his religious life as a monk behind.

• He promised that if he ever recovered, he would build a cathedral in honor of the virgin Mary and after recovering began working on it.

• Gallego had no formal training as an architect, no construction permit, and no government funding.

• His cathedral is a sight to see with its sprawling entrance step, 125-foot-tall cupola and two cloisters flanking it and was built using only scrap materials that he could get his hands on. It also includes a tomb, where he wished to be buried.

• In an interview in 2017 Mr. Gallego stated, “I’ve not bee building this to get money or fame, just as I’m not here to listen to people decide whether I’m mad or unique. I’m fully responsibly for my work.”

• Mr. Gallego passed away on 28th November 2021 at the age of 96, leaving his unfinished cathedral behind.

• The mayor of the town said that the cathedral was to be listed as a building of special cultural interest by his administration so that it can never disappear.

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