This Catholic church was a direct response to the 'Russification' of Poland.ulica Floriańska 3 (map)
Construction of this Catholic church began to meet the pastoral needs of the parish, but also as a direct response to the 'Russification' of Poland; in this way, the church was a form of protest and an act of defiance. In the second half of the 19th century, the monumental Orthodox Church of Mary Magdalene was created in Praga, prompting the priest of the local parish to build a new, neo-Gothic form of the Catholic church: its soaring 75-meter-tall towers were visible from afar, and dominated the onion dome of the nearby Orthodox church.
During World War II, the church was completely ruined with the Nazis blowing it up just two days before permanently leaving Praga; they used a huge quantity of explosives which also aimed to blow up a nearby hospital (which was actually saved). Afterwards, the only surviving fragments were the external walls and two statues: those of St. Michael the Archangel and St. Florian. Reconstruction lasted until 1970, and was undertaken using bricks that were produced in the 19th century, to give the new church a sense of authenticity. In 1992, the new Warsaw- Praga Diocese was created and as its cathedral the church of St. Michael was chosen, and it has been called from that time 'Praga's cathedral'.