The world lost one of its most iconic man- made structures –– the Notre Dame de Paris in Paris, France Monday, April 15.
Europe has been on my list of locales for a long time, with the city of Paris being one of them with its amazing art, food and culture, but most of all its history and Norte Dame was at the center of much of it.
The cathedral survived 800 years; in that time the world around it suffered everything from plagues to revolutions.
The construction of the cathedral took place over the course of 200 years; it was started in 1163 during the reign of King Louis VII and was completed in 1345.
The Cathedral underwent many restorations and additions with one of the most prevalent being after the French Revolution when Napoleon Bona Parte saved the cathedral and was then crowned emperor within it.
The history behind it was enough for me to feel the devastation from this side of the world.
The city has vowed to repair and restore the famous gothic cathedral. But will it be the same? With 400-year-old paintings lost forever, to historical religious artifacts, even a functioning 17th century organ that survived the French Revolution are lost.
But one of the true treasures of the church the famed stained-glass rose windows survived, thankfully.
In the aftermath we found out only an estimated 5 to 10 percent of the arts and relics within its walls were actually lost. Thanks to the quick thinking of Priest Jean-Marc Fournier who dashed into the flames inside the church to save its most sacred relic — the crown of thorns believed to be worn by Jesus himself.
As the flames spread across the roof of the famed cathedral, Fournier had also helped form a human chain that helped haul out most of the church’s priceless relics including the tunic once worn by King Louis IX.
The damage to a historical landmark such as this is a moment in its history that one day we can all say was a day — even if just for a moment —that our hearts were in Paris.