The fire and the destruction it has caused are heart-breaking. We stand together in prayer with all who love Notre Dame: its worshipping community, those who have visited, and those who only know it from afar. We understand their sense of loss, and the uplifting connection people feel with cathedrals and churches the world over.
But no matter the destruction, the spirit of what it means to be a cathedral can and does survive such catastrophes.
In England, the spire at Lincoln collapsed in the 1500s, St Paul’s was destroyed in the Great Fire of London and Coventry was destroyed by bombs. All have been rebuilt, sometimes taking on new forms, to stand as reminders of eternity and resurrection which are the foundation of the Christian faith.