Notre Dame, our Mother
Tender, strong and true,
Proudly in the heavens
Gleams thy gold and blue.
“Papa, what’s that fancy church?”
My toddler likes to look at pictures of our wedding, especially as a stalling tactic ahead of naps and bedtime.
“That’s a very special church at Notre Dame, where Mama and Papa went to school. That’s also where Mama and Papa got married.”
“Oh. I like that special church.”
Whether as a drive-by or as your intentional destination, chances are that, if you have ever been to the University of Notre Dame, you have been captivated at one point or another by the glistening light of candles that cast their shadows upon the inside walls of the Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes. Or, perhaps your attention goes directly to the statue tucked discreetly inside a relatively small niche on the upper right side of the striking stone structure.
Built in 1843 by Fr. Sorin and seven Holy Cross Brothers, Old College is the oldest building on the Notre Dame campus. The simple brick structure has had many uses over the years, including a student dormitory, classrooms, a clothing room, a bakery, and even a dining hall.
Built in 1831 as the headquarters for French missionaries working in northern Indiana, the Log Chapel was the first building on what is now Notre Dame’s campus. Fr. Sorin received the Log Chapel, along with the rest of the campus property, when he arrived in 1842. This one-room cabin with an attic served all of Notre Dame’s needs during its first year.