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BONUS BLOG: A United Methodist Bishop Reflects on Notre Dame’s Fire

April 17, 2019

Bishop Wm. Boyd Grove (a/k/a “my unexpected breakfast partner”) (have me tell you that story sometime) has graciously given me carte blanche to quote and credit him, so here is his profound reflection on The Burning of Notre Dame — 


Notre Dame means “Our Lady.”

The great Cathedral, sitting in splendor above Paris, was named for, and dedicated to the young girl from Nazareth to whom the angel spoke. “Do not be afraid Mary. For you have found favor with God. You will bear a son, and shall name him Jesus.” [Luke 2:30,31]. She became Notre Dame-Our Lady.

The veneration of the mother of Jesus feels foreign to those of us of the Reformation Churches. But this Holy Week, as Paris and the world grieves, we should pay attention to Our Lady.

When the great cathedral was built 800 years ago we Christians were all Catholic. And in our deepest core, we are Catholic still. And at the very least as John XXIII graciously called us, we are only “separated brethren.”

In Holy Week, on Friday, Mary grieved beside the cross while her son was dying. In this Holy Week she wept on Monday too.

On Sunday, with the other women, she went to the tomb and found that her son was alive. The Church named for her, like her son, will live again. “Do not be afraid Mary. For you have found favor with God. Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you!” Notre Dame!

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