Sentimental Value

The fire at Notre Dame Cathedral and how it will impact us all.

 

Paris, France, 15 April 2019

You watch as the late afternoon sky turns bright red and smoky with flames. You look to see what could be on fire. What you see, you can’t believe. Yes, Notre Dame Cathedral is engulfed in flames and it will never be the same again.

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A building that has lasted almost a millennium, through plague, revolution, and two world wars has fallen prey to one of humanity’s most important discoveries for survival. In an instance, an inspirational and priceless monument that represents an entire culture and faith has experienced catastrophic destruction. 

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Thankfully, Notre Dame Cathedral still stands tall but will need major renovations. Sadly in the fire, it lost not only much of its roof but also its glorious spire, the highest point of the Cathedral. According to the New York Times, authorities have yet to discover the cause of the fire but have already put into place fundraising efforts to reconstruct the monument.

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I personally experienced deep sorrow when watching the live stream of the fire through YouTube and several other media platforms. Seeing the response online alone brought me to tears and when even speaking to my mother about the fire, she said, “it remind[ed her] of the events of 9/11.” I carry such great admiration for Notre Dame Cathedral. I cannot even imagine something so magnificent experiencing so much devastation. Its beautiful gothic construction has stood the test of time and represents so much for my faith. This fire will affect not only the French people for some time, but also all those who practice Catholicism, especially as the fire occurred on the Monday of Holy Week. 

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Though this event is beyond devastating, there is much further to discuss about it and what it has to do on our view of the world. Seeing the response online about the fire has not only been emotional but also very informative as people took the event to promote things that I too believe need as much attention as Notre Dame.  

For example, on Instagram one person posted this:

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Their post reads: “While this is sad I want to point out it’s also important to tell you that rainforests that’s been on this world for a millennia are being cut/burned down and no one cares.” The post is followed by a link to a post about the fire at Notre Dame.

I think it is important not only to promote important topics but to also remember emotional relevance. Many people carry sentimental value for Notre Dame Cathedral. I saw many pour their hearts out for the Cathedral as it burned, remembering the many memories they shared under its now torched roof. Rainforests, on the other hand, don’t carry as much sentimental value. Most rainforests don’t represent a culture and significant groups of people gathered together as much as Notre Dame does. However, they are just as important. 

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With every year that pasts, we lose more and more trees, glaciers, and animals. Rainforests are not only vital for our oxygen supply, but they also provide homes for thousands of animals worldwide, many animals that would go extinct without them. 

Via Google Images

I think it is important to remember in this time of endless problems, with now a new one added to the list, we must remember the things that will keep us alive, that will keep us together. I pray not only for Notre Dame Cathedral but also for our rainforests and the animals that live in them. May we all survive another day.

 

If you would like to donate to the reconstruction of Notre Dame Cathedral go to: https://don.fondation-patrimoine.org/SauvonsNotreDame/~my-donation?_cv=1

And if you would like to donate to help save the rainforests go to: https://rainforestfoundation.org/donatenow/

 

Much love and peace

Emily