The seminary was established in 1728 and, following the end of the Jesuits’ mission, was taken over by the Lazarites. The church was erected in 1758. In 2005, the church became one of the designated sites of the Historic Centre of Macau enlisted on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
St. Joseph’s Seminary and Church is a simple, neoclassical complex made of gray brick and granite. The church façade is 27 meters wide and 19 meters at the highest point. The façade is characterized by molded plaster relief, accentuated in white against the plain wall rendered in yellow.
Inside the church, in one of the lateral altars, lies one of Macao’s most precious religious relics, a piece of bone from the arm of St. Francis Xavier, that formerly belonged to the collection of the Church of Mater Dei.