Catacombs – Life Happens
Eiffel Tower – Life Celebrated
Normandy – Life Marginalized, Exterminated, Fought For, Liberated
Catacombs: Life Happens
Death is a part of life. Not one we really like to talk about. As believers we have the hope of eternal life. We know with assurance we will be reunited with our loved ones in the faith. But there’s that part that is hard for us all, when a loved one takes a last breath and all that is left is the earthly shell. There were so many people living in Paris and the cemeteries were overcrowded and the ability to bury the remains became so difficult, in fact disease began to become a serious issue. Thus, the catacombs, exhuming bodies and taking the remains and burying them (stacking them) in the hallways of the quarry’s below the surface. Very creatively I might add. A very interesting, creepy waaaay too deep under the streets and water and sewer system of Paris, I might add! For my liking… I’m just sayin’!
Eiffel Tower: Life Celebrated
Paris, France. The Eiffel Tower was built by Gustave Eiffel for the 1889 Exposition Universelle, which was to celebrate the 100th year anniversary of the French Revolution. Its construction in 2 years, 2 months and 5 days was a veritable technical and architectural achievement. (Quoted from https://artsandculture.google.com/partner/tour-eiffel)
The tower wasn’t supposed to stay, it was a temporary structure, in fact the majority of the population thought it was a huge obstruction … but it is now ‘Paris’. I mean, when you hear Paris what do you think? Right? The Eiffel Tower!
The tower wasn’t supposed to be a permanent structure and in fact the majority of the population thought it was ugly and needed to be removed after the exposition. However, when you hear the word ‘Paris’ what do you usually think about first? Right? The Eiffel Tower!
Normandy – Life Marginalized, Life Exterminated, Life Fought For, Life Liberated
War is a horrible thing. I remember on one of the 11th grade trips, we had an office of the Air Force come and share with the students about being a believer in the military. The struggles he faced and how his faith made the difference. One thing he said really impacted all of us. “Going to war is the last thing anyone in the military wants to do. In fact, we will try to do everything we can, to keep from taking our men and women into war. But sometimes when you have done everything you can, you must stand up for the freedom and rights of other human beings.
We went to the Omaha Beach, The American Cemetery in Normandy and Ponte du Hoc. It is hard to put into words when you are walking down this beautiful path and you turn left and you get sight of the hundreds of white crosses, meticulously placed row after row. Men that never came home. Some markers had names, rank and home state. Other markers said, “Here Rests In Honored Glory A COMRADE IN ARMS Known But To God”.
From your Students:
We head out in the morning by train to Harleem, Amsterdam! We’re all excited to be experiencing this together. Missing my students that didn’t get to come! Looking forward to seeing your faces next Monday 😀 !!!
P.S. Another Shout out ….. Sooooooo appreciate Nan and Chris Castello and Jeff Smith (Summit Alumni dad and 13 years of co-leading the 11th grade D.C. trip) and their leadership and friendship. Thank you to their families that sacrifice to allow them to be able to join us on this trip!