Thursday, October 20, 2016

Notre Dame Paris

Can anyone forget Quasimodo in The Hunchback of Notre Dame dashing along the top of Notre Dame trying to rescue Esmeralda.  A great novel by Victor Hugo published in 1831.  A classic.  And so is Notre Dame.  It is almost impossible to describe the vastness and height, you have to crane your neck all the way back to see the ceiling when inside.

And to make it even more perfect it is actually situated on a little island (I'lle de la Cite) surrounded by the Seine, and feels like a small town onto itself.

It is still a working church.  Once again along the side of the church are small alcoves which they use as chapels, but in Notre Dame they also used as confessionals.  2 of them were total glass so you could see the person and the priest and they could see each other.  As interesting as it was I didn't feel it was appropriate to take a picture.

One of the chapels was designated as the "Jubilee of Mercy" Chapel.  I feel like  the world needs to have a lot more mercy in it.

My favourite Saint Joan of Arc.  

To think this was built by men with hammers and ropes.  If you look closely at the picture below, they have set up a wheel with a man inside it who walks on it (looks similar to the mouse wheel) which pulls the rope which lifts the stones up to the top.  The church was started in 1163 and essentially finished in 1345.  The outer piers are called "flying buttresses" and stopped the walls from collapsing outwards.  They look beautiful and add such character to the church.

The lighting inside the church added another whole spirtualness to it.  Imagine, all the baptisms, weddings, funerals and just everyday prayers that were said in these walls that have stood through storms and wars and bombs.

We figure we walked over 20 kms on this day so what was one more little jaunt down to see Notre Dame as the sun set.  As amazing as it is during the day, it is beautiful at night.

Notre Dame Paris and Notre Dame Rouen amaze me.  900 years old and counting and still looking as magnificent today as they were when they were completed.

No comments:

Post a Comment