I really don’t want to watch a landmark building burn on live TV ever again.
As I was driving back from MPB, an announcer broke into the cable news XM channel with news of a fire near Notre Dame. Soon, it was confirmed that it WAS Notre Dame. My heart sank.
“Surely it was small and would be contained,” I thought.
At a stoplight, I checked Twitter and saw pictures. Oh God. The roof was engulfed. I got back into the office and watched with horror as one of the most beautiful cathedrals in the world burned out of control. I scribbled cartoon ideas. Nothing. I couldn’t come up with an idea that captured the sadness of the moment.
I thought to myself, “Why? And why now? This is Holy Week after all!”
Then I thought, “Yes, this IS Holy Week.”
Palm Sunday is a day of beauty and celebration. Then the week slips into darkness, pain and then death on Friday. Then on Sunday there is joy because of the resurrection.
Many of the precious artworks and artifacts were saved. The structure is basically intact. The cross glowed at the altar in the first photos from the ruined interior. Money has been pledged for repairs and France is united. In the face of a horrible loss of history, faith stood strong outside of the building as the crowd came together and sang Ave Maria together.
I thought, “It’s Holy Week. Today is painful but Notre Dame will be resurrected.”
And I then started to draw.