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Locals react to Notre Dame Cathedral fire in Paris

News reports showing Paris’s iconic Notre Dame Cathedral in flames Monday morning were unsettling to people around the world including in the Coastal Bend.

“It’s just really heartbreaking to see that,” Annette Sanchez, the office manager at Our Lady Of Perpetual Help Academy, said.

Not only does Sanchez work for that Corpus Christi Catholic school that’s connected to a church, she’s also visited Notre Dame in the past. That’s why she’s taking the news hard. The same can be said for Ernest Juarez, a parishioner at Corpus Christi’s Most Sacred Blood Catholic Church.

“I’ve been there, and it’s a beautiful, beautiful church,” Juarez said.

Sanchez and Juarez are bonded by their faith and sadness over the Notre Dame fire, but that’s not where their similarities end. They share a conviction that the cathedral will eventually rise from the ashes.

“People of faith know loss,” Sanchez said. “We pick up our crosses and follow Jesus, and those of us whose faith is strong trust that everything’s going to be OK even in the midst of such awful destruction.”

“If you believe in God, if you believe in Jesus himself, I think everything will be fine,” Juarez said.

Bishop Michael Mulvey put a statement on Facebook about the Notre Dame fire. It read, “All of us are shocked and deeply saddened to learn of the catastrophic fire that has ravaged Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. My heart aches to watch the destruction of this historic cathedral during this Holy Week of our Lord’s passion, death, and resurrection. I pray that our Heavenly Father will console the people of Paris, France and people of good will around the world.”

Seth Kovar

Seth Kovar

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