I love church buildings, particularly cathedrals especially since I read Ken Follet's Pilars of the Earth. (if you haven't read it, I highly recommend it - better yet, get his collaboration with the photographer, F. Stop Fitzgerald, called Pillars of the Almighty) They were built for a number of reasons - psycho-social unification, religious/political (they weren't seperate) power, instructional methodologies for illiterate peoples etc. But one of their purposes was to try to inspire a sense of the awesomeness and majesty of God just by the sheer physical impact and beauty of the structure itself. One can argue the theological merits of such a goal, but it is difficult to argue that they did not achieve it when you see Notre Dame. We just toured the outside today, later on we will climb the towers and explore the catacombs. In the meantime, here's a few pics.