Trinity Cathedral to toll its bell in solidarity with Notre Dame
Statement from the Very Rev. Bernard J. Owens, Dean of Trinity Cathedral, Cleveland:
Following the example of cathedrals and churches throughout the Anglican Communion, Trinity Cathedral will toll its bell on Thursday at 2 p.m. for seven minutes in solidarity with Notre Dame de Paris Cathedral.
For centuries the Cathedral of Notre Dame has stood as a beacon of hope and devotion, of beauty and holiness at the heart of a singular city. The Cathedral’s soaring beauty of has always spoken to pilgrims and Parisians alike: God is here in the midst of the city, present yet mysterious.
As Christians we are stewards of a great many treasures that both glorify God and shape the cities and towns where we live and worship. These sacred spaces speak of God’s transcendence in the midst of the places where we live, work, worship and play; they proclaim in a language beyond words a vision of human community shaped by the love of God. They tell the story of our faith and often hold that story in their very walls and windows when our cultures, in darker seasons, forget them. God is present in these sacred vessels, and so we grieve when fire and flood consume them. We pray for those whose lives and livelihoods are connected to this magnificent cathedral today, and we pray for the safety of those who will work to preserve and rebuild it in the years to come.
Let us also take this moment to remember and celebrate the Communion of Saints: the countless souls who through the centuries have worked and worshiped within those stone walls, who through the work of their hands and the devotion of their prayers worked alongside God to build the Cathedral of Notre Dame.
Though we cannot prevent the unthinkable from happening, as the people of Trinity and the Diocese of Ohio we are mindful of our responsibility as stewards of our own cathedral so that it can continue to be a beacon of transformation and hope for generations to come. Just weeks ago we completed our Life Safety Project, a $1.5 million campaign to update our fire alarm system, add extensive sprinkler coverage to the basement, add new architecturally-appropriate handrails to the front steps and push-assist door operation to entrances throughout the campus, and a number of other safety and accessibility improvements. We are deeply grateful to the many people in the Trinity community and beyond who through pledges and donations to this campaign have made Trinity safer and more welcoming.