NOTRE-DAME, A SYMPHONY OF STONE
A Tragic Day
On Monday, Notre-Dame, the beating heart of Paris, was engulfed in flames. It was hard to watch her burn, and even harder to believe how a French Gothic cathedral that took centuriesto build could be severely damaged in just minutes. Regardless of whether or not you are French or Catholic, as the spire toppled and the roof caved in, you felt as though you were seeing your own house on fire.
Notre-Dame is a timeless icon and the most visited landmark in Paris. Architecturally speaking, she’s known for a rib vault, flying buttresses, colorful rose windows, and the naturalism of her sculptural decoration. Work on the cathedral began 1160, which means that she was able to survive the French Revolution, witness the coronation of Napoleon I, and even endure World War II. The cathedral has significant religious and spiritual meaning, too. Walking into Notre-Dame, you feel connected to others, both past and present, who have also stood in awe of her overwhelming beauty and holiness.
Notre-Dame: Looking Back
Looking back on the history of this sacred place, it’s important to note that this is not the first time that Notre-Dame has been injured. To put things into perspective, this horrible fire will eventually just become a part of Notre-Dame’s long and fabled history. As they begin plans to rebuild, we must all be grateful for the essential parts that did survive: the iconic bell towers, the Rose Window and the Crown of Thorns.
There is Hope
It may take over a decade to restore Notre-Dame back to her former glory, but it can be done. This magnificent champion of ruin and repair has taught us all to be a little more reverent in the presence of historical monuments. For until they are threatened, we can sometimes forget to appreciate these gateways to our collective past.
Do you have any stories from your time at Notre-Dame? Share your experience with us in the comments below.
How to Contribute
Want to help? Click here to donate to restore Notre-Dame: http://www.notredamedeparis.fr/friends/donate/