|L'Eglise Saint-Louis in Grenoble, France|
The droplets could be the tears of Mr. Loo-wee, or me, or Jesus, I thought.
Crying for the souls of the people of Europe who have forgotten.
On a Sunday evening their bars were crowded,
their restaurants were full,
their markets were bustling,
and their cathedrals stood empty.
The building housed 400 years of echoes of chiming bells and an organ bellowing hymns.
But then I realized there really was music coming from the church behind me.
I scrambled up from the steps, but found the door was locked.
No signs hung nearby to announce service times.
I slid back down to the ground, situating my head at the perfect angle to hear the melodies through the heavy wooden 17th-century door. I leaned back on the stone wall, simply listening.
After awhile, the music stopped.
The doors opened to reveal a man walking out of the cathedral, sheet music in hand. He proceeded to lock the doors behind him.
I imagined he was in there worshipping for an audience of one (or two if you count the nosy American listening through the mammoth doors).
In the mournful resonance of the organ's pipes I didn't hear the demise of Europe's faith. I heard reverberations of hope: that one day L'Eglise Saint-Louis would again be filled with worshippers praising together, along with the rest of Grenoble, with the rest of Europe; that the words inscribed above the doors—that this house was built for the Lord—would again be true.
*After some quick Google searches, I later discovered that this man was rehearsing for an upcoming concert featuring their newly refurbished organ.