In the days before summer, I am reflecting on the final days of spring. Springtime is one of my favorite times of year in the District, mainly due to the beautiful cherry blossoms that bloom at the end of every March. One of my favorite spots to visit the cherry blossom trees during peak bloom is the area surrounding the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in the Brookland neighborhood of Washington, D.C.
I was surprised to learn that, on the floor of the main hall of the basilica, the names of Catholic churches around the world are inscribed in gold. Additionally, the length of the church, in meters, is included, so that visitors can see how large these churches are in comparison to St. Peter’s – the largest Catholic church in the world. From the inscription, we can see that the length of the National Shrine is 139.14 meters, or about 465.5 feet long, compared to the 186.36 meters (611.45 feet) of St. Peter’s. It was a wonderful experience seeing a bit of home overseas while touring this beautiful building.
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