In any case, Mahony said he had no doubt that all $163.2 million in cash or pledges would be in hand by the time the cathedral is dedicated, probably in spring 2002. Construction is expected to be completed in mid-December 2001, Mahony said Thursday.
The cardinal said the project has not exceeded its $163.2-million "cap" on construction costs. Those costs include building the church, the underground parking structure, the great public plaza next to the cathedral, the conference center and residence.
At the same time, Mahony announced that a separate $4.6 million has been raised as part of a new fund--Our Lady of the Angels Fund--to endow the cathedral and to be used exclusively for artwork and other adornments.
That means that instead of opening what he jokingly called "a plain vanilla" cathedral, the archdiocese from the start will be able to present a showcase of religious art and furnishings to a far greater degree than imagined, he said.
Meanwhile, Murdoch's $10-million contribution seemed to get him an immediate dividend. Fox television and Channel 11 were the only television stations invited to Thursday's news conference.