Happy Easter!

The first shock of the news from Paris, about the fire that destroyed the roof and spire of Notre-Dame cathedral, has been tempered somewhat by good news. The basic stone structure seems to be sound, and the three rose windows – the greatest works of art connected to the church – didn't suffer any significant damage.

Here's a short video by Bishop Robert Barron, currently serving as auxiliary bishop for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, about his first encounter with the North Rose Window, and the meaning that underlies the design.

Notre-Dame de Paris will be repaired. It may take a few years, but that is small in comparison to the almost 200 years needed to construct the original building. The 13th century roof will be replaced. The fallen spire, such a dramatic image from the scenes of the fire and whose loss seemed to have struck so many in the heart, was actually not part of the original design. It was added in the 19th century, during Viollet-le-Duc's restoration, but already architects are preparing proposals for its replacement.

Through it all, let's not forget that the building – as beautiful and inspiring as it may be – is just a building. The good news about Notre-Dame is not a substitute for the euangelion, the real Good News.

He is risen.

Happy Easter!

Travel Thought for the Week

“A man who has not been to Italy is always conscious of an inferiority, from his not having seen what it is expected a man should see.”

– Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), English lexicographer

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