On Tuesday morning I was at BYU, at work scanning and preserving family treasures when I received a text from a friend with the news of the fire at Notre Dame. I was stunned at the thought of the loss of this great cathedral and all it represents to the Christian world.
Throughout the day, I checked the news on my phone, sick at the thought of it. Images flooded in, and people all over the world responded. They say the fire alarm was first triggered Monday evening at 6:20 p.m. Twenty-three minutes later, flames were visible high in the building’s ancient wooden frame.
Construction of Notre Dame, which was built on the ruins of earlier churches, began in 1163 and was completed in 1345. That’s about 800 years of a presence that’s inspired believers and heathens alike. Each year about 12 million tourists pass through Notre Dame, seeking peace and inspiration. I have been there several times, for the same reasons and have felt the sacred majesty of the place.
As I looked at photos of people mourning this loss at the start of this Easter Holy Week, my thoughts have turned to our Savior, Jesus Christ, whose mortal body was offered as a sacrifice on a lone hill outside a city wall, not just a symbol or structure of Christianity, but the Essence of Christianity. Oh, the loss! Did the world stop to notice and mourn as we have stopped to mourn this week? Do we hold Him as dear to us as we hold this holy edifice that represents Him?
Something about this horrible fire has changed my Easter worship this week and reminded me what I hold dear. I love my Savior, Jesus Christ with all my heart. I love Him for giving His life for me, a sacrifice for my sins.
He is more than a cathedral to me. He is Everything to me. Oh, how I love Him!
“O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?” (1 Cor 15:55).
Because of Him, we will live again. Because of Him, we will each rise from the dust when we are finished here. I love my Savior, Jesus Christ.