Notre Dame fire: Anger at billionaires and visions

Billionaires from around the world pledged over $1 billion overnight to restore the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. Although most people favor rebuilding the historic cathedral, they are angry at the reality that there’s plenty of money—but not to take care of things like basic human needs, refugees or climate change.

Some comments from the U.S.:

“While I appreciate the beauty of the symbolic and iconic Cathedrals, having visited Italy and seen its beautiful Cathedrals, including the Vatican … it does not compare to the importance of standing in solidarity with the Cathedral of the oppressed and poor, with groups such as Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign, with the homeless and hungry, who are the Church, who are the Body of Christ. (1 Cor. 12 and Matthew 25, Isaiah 58) … It also should not be lost on people of Faith and people of good conscience that the sacred Cathedral of the deep ecology of planet earth, the Cathedral of the planet, mother earth is being destroyed and we face extinction.”

• Rev. Bruce Wright

“And why is this loss deemed more valuable to white Europeans than the loss of a mountain, a stream, people’s livelihood, health, and well-being for cheap coal? … Why does the media drag on and on about Notre Dame in the blatant absence of reporting about mountain top removal, or historic Black churches burning or mosques destroyed … or countless other losses … often with actual human suffering? Maybe this moment is a way to reach people and help them understand [our] loss is universal, and that the media is a reflection of dominant culture, not human values. Maybe then we can have empathy and action.”

—Excerpted from a Facebook user

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