It starts with a dream, a vision and a long-range plan.
Cathedral Thinking is a concept that relates to how ancient cathedrals were built—and has relevance in our 30th anniversary year. It starts with a dream, a vision and a long-range plan. It is built on a common goal, a shared purpose and a belief so strong and commitment so deep that you will work unwavering knowing you will never see it completed.
Notre Dame Cathedral “Our Lady of Paris”
Notre Dame is considered one of the most prominent catholic churches in the world. It is almost 52,000 sq. feet in size. It has 10 ringing bells—the largest weighing over 13 tons. The organ has almost 8,000 pipes and 5 keyboards.
Notre Dame was built from 1163–1345, taking 182 years. It was the vision of Bishop Maurice Sully. But Bishop Sully died in 1196, and there were 18 more Bishops in Paris before it was completed.
St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome
St. Peter (one of Jesus apostles) went to Rome to spread the gospel and establish the church but was martyred there by Emperor Nero. Peter is buried beneath the alter of the church.
St. Peter’s is the largest church in the world—163,000 sq. feet. Michelangelo was one of the designers. Pope Julius II commissioned St Peter’s Basilica and began construction in 1506. And there were 21 more Popes before it was completed in 1626–120 years later.
Cologne Cathedral in Germany
The Cologne Cathedral is the most popular tourist site in Germany—visited by more than 20,000 people a day. It has twin peaks that stand 515 feet tall and at the time it was built, it was the tallest building in the world.
Construction of Cologne Cathedral began in 1248 and went on for 225 years to 1473 and then was halted (unfinished). Construction began again in 1842 and it was finished in 1880. Altogether it took 632 years to complete.
Cathedral thinking is an exercise in supreme delayed gratification.
Cathedral thinking is an exercise in supreme delayed gratification. Can you imagine waiting that long for anything to be completed? Not today.
Instead we want to:
- Lose weight and get in shape in a week
- Google anything, anytime, anywhere
- Text and WhatsApp instantly
- Tweet, Instagram and be on Facebook all at the same time
- Buy things instantly
- Download music instantly
- Watch TV, anytime, anywhere
By all of life’s measures, Eaglecom lives in an instant world too, don’t we? We want it all done now—media buys, pre logs, post logs, prelim reports, data conversions, automation, final reports, uploads, downloads, daily Nielsen numbers, reports done COB, copy changes, edits and re-edits EOD, redundancy in real time, currency conversions in an instant and pay cheques in our bank accounts by 9:01am on payday.
At Eaglecom, we live in a day-by-day, week-by-week deadline business—creating commercials, executing buys, analyzing, reporting, managing finances.
But, when you think about it, Eaglecom’s outcomes are truly Cathedral
- Ending animal abuse
- Curing childhood cancer
- Ending disease and suffering for children and families around the world
- Protecting our planet
These outcomes take a long time and we are committed to them and that is Cathedral thinking, Cathedral working and Cathedral living.
Henry Bergh started the ASPCA 150 years ago, but couldn’t possibly have known the vast reach it would have today—saving and rescuing animal’s lives all across America. Working to end all animal cruelty.
Danny Thomas started St. Jude in 1962 with a simple dream that no child should die in the dawn of life. Danny worked tirelessly but passed away in 1991. And, while he saw it grow, he didn’t see the global impact St. Jude would have for children all around the world.
UNHCR was formed in 1950 to help the millions of refugees after WWII. They had a 3 year mandate to finish their work. Now 68 years later they are helping more than 65 million refugees and displaced people in some of the most volatile and dangerous conflict zones in the world.
World Wildlife Fund was formed in Switzerland in 1961 by Victor Stolan, Julian Huxley and Max Nicholson. They began with a dream to help protect endangered animals. The three founders have all passed away and never saw the far reaching international environmental impact their organization went on to make 57 years later.
These organizations succeeded because people were, and are, committed to outcomes they will never see. And after 30 years of passionate dedication by you and many others who came here before you, we are still working to end suffering and save lives.
Even our work with Eaglecom Foundation and Upendo School is Cathedral. We give to help and yet most of us won’t ever meet the people we give to. We have no idea how we will change their lives and the ripple effect it will have for families and communities for generations to come. That is cathedral.
Let Me Close
I hope you have a wonderful holiday season. I wish you health, peace, love and fulfillment for 2019. I hope 2019 is a year when you get lots of things accomplished. I hope it’s a year when you enjoy immediate gratification in your work and in your life. But I hope it’s also a year that you appreciate and are proud of the long term, Cathedral accomplishments you and we will be part of together.
Suffering will be relieved. Lives will be saved.
We won’t be thanked or personally appreciated by those we help next year or in the years to come. But long after we finish our work here; animals, people and communities will benefit. Suffering will be relieved. Lives will be saved.
And that is our reward. That is our thanks and appreciation.