If I were to ask you to name cities around the world that are home to some of the grandest and most beautiful cathedrals would you name Washington, D.C.? If your answer was "no" you might want to revise your list.
Normally we in Washington take the Washington National Cathedral for granted, driving past it on Wisconsin Avenue or Reno Road, hardly taking a glance. If we were to fly to Europe and see a similar edifice, we'd be snapping photos and buying postcards. And writing home about what a grand sight we'd seen.
Funny how most of us look past what's in our own back yards.
But a few weeks ago, I stared the cathedral in the facade. I was going around town looking for photos to take for a photography contest I wanted to enter (Sure! Feel free to vote for "cathedral"). I wound up at the front doors of the sixth-largest cathedral in the world.
Some fun facts about Washington National Cathedral, gleaned from its website:
- The "Space Window" contains a moon rock from one of the U.S.'s lunar missions.
- The dream of a national cathedral dates back to 1791 when George Washington was president, although plans for building it didn't get traction until 100 years later.
So if you happen to be on your own in DC, shooting the monuments and other local sites, consider making your way to the cathedral on the hill. Prove to your friends that while the cathedral in DC may not date back as far as most of the grand cathedrals in Europe and elsewhere, it's still mighty impressive. As cathedrals go.
1. By Ellen Perlman. Front, Washington National Cathedral, officially dedicated as the Cathedral Church of Saint Peter and Saint Paul.
2. By John Sinteur