The Basilica of Saint Louis, King of France, in downtown Saint Louis, is seen here from the top of the Gateway Arch. When Laclede and Choteau planned the village of Saint Louis in 1764, this spot was reserved for the Catholic church: this structure was completed in 1834, and was preceded by a brick church, a log church, and a log house. The earliest Masses were offered here in a tent. The rectory attached to the church dates from the 1960s. Formerly the Cathedral of the Archdiocese, this is now a personal parish.
Please note the view looking down on the church. While the majority of Americans claim to be religious — or spiritual — there is often little concrete evidence of it, for the most prominent structures here are either towers of commerce or the state.