Those heartbreaking images of the fire at Notre Dame in Paris made us especially conscious of the blessings of Exeter Cathedral. Watching the roof burn focused our thoughts on our spectacular vaulted ceiling - the longest Gothic vault in the world - and also of the burden of responsibility we bear in caring for Devon's best building. Sadly these great buildings are taken pretty much for granted while all is seemingly well; people tend only to express their appreciation when tragedy strikes. But of course Exeter without the Cathedral is unthinkable.
The Cathedral provides a sense of wellbeing for us all. Perhaps you sit on the wall eating a lunch-time sandwich drinking in the scenery, or come in to light a candle for a family member or for a sense of peace and reflection in a busy life. Maybe you join in a service or a special occasion here, or come to sing carols at Christmas. Many people from near and far will find that the Cathedral is part of the rhythm of the seasons and of our daily life.
We can all marvel at the size and splendour of the building and the intricacies and detail of the stone-carving and stained glass, but caring for it costs a great deal of money. Please give as generously as you can to help us maintain the cathedral in good order, and to pass it on in good shape for the generations who come after us.