Famed Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris on Fire
Officials are treating the massive fire that broke out at the Notre Dame Cathedral on Monday as an accident. The cathedral has been undergoing construction, with scaffolding all around the famed spire and roof. On Monday, the roof and spire collapsed as flames encompassed both.
Update: Officials say that the iconic bell towers have been saved. They stated that the roof was 3/4 destroyed, but the towers made it through.
Rarely do we write about buildings here. But having been inside the Cathedral myself, its massive beauty is unmatched in any European church, from its recognizable spire that is now gone, to it’s amazing stained glass windows. It literally took your breath away to see it in person.
Built in the 12th Century, the Notre Dame de Paris (Our Lady of Paris) has been a significant tourist destination at around 12 million people per year. It was considered the finest example of Gothic architecture in the world. It has been “updated” and worked on for decades as different parts of the structure needed it. Age was starting to cause problems with the building, so construction had begun to fix the walls and archways that held it together. The diocese was soliciting donations to repair it.
Emergency crews were desperately attempting to save the artwork that was stored inside the cathedral, though many of the surrounding statutes had been removed for the construction. According to reports, tourists seeing the flames engulfing the cathedral were stopped in their tracks, and authorities had trouble holding them back. (CNBC)
The intensity of the flames coming out of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris… pic.twitter.com/JDAMCXFMk4— Caleb Hull (@CalebJHull) April 15, 2019
Notre-Dame de Paris in flames. Emotion of a whole nation. Thought for all Catholics and for all French. Like all our compatriots, I am sad tonight to see this part of us burn. ” Emmanuel Macron
It was created as the House of God and Man, and is home to the Archbishop of Paris. But spokesmen of the Cathedral say that the structure has “suffered colossal damages.” It is unclear how much of it will survive the conflagration. Firefighters said they were having difficulty extinguishing the flames, particularly in the bell towers and frames, according to a local journalist.
Over the last several months, numerous churches in France and Germany have been vandalized, torched, and even defecated on. French authorities are saying this fire is “accidental.” I’ll ask who was in the construction crew?
The Gatestone Institute reported on April 14,
“In France, two churches are desecrated every day on average. According to PI-News, a German news site, 1,063 attacks on Christian churches or symbols (crucifixes, icons, statues) were registered in France in 2018. This represents a 17% increase compared to the previous year (2017), when 878 attacks were registered— meaning that such attacks are only going from bad to worse.
“Among some of the recent desecrations in France, the following took place in just February and March:
“Vandals plundered Notre-Dame des Enfants Church in Nîmes and used human excrement to draw a cross there; consecrated bread was found thrown outside among garbage.
The Saint-Nicolas Church in Houilles was vandalized on three separate occasions in February; a 19th century statue of the Virgin Mary, regarded as “irreparable,” was “completely pulverized,” said a clergyman; and a hanging cross was thrown to the floor.
Vandals desecrated and smashed crosses and statues at Saint-Alain Cathedral in Lavaur, and mangled the arms of a statue of a crucified Christ in a mocking manner. In addition, an altar cloth was burned.
Arsonists torched the Church of St. Sulpice in Paris soon after midday mass on Sunday, March 17.
“Similar reports are coming out of Germany. Four separate churches were vandalized and/or torched in March alone. “In this country,” PI-News explained, “there is a creeping war against everything that symbolizes Christianity: attacks on mountain-summit crosses, on sacred statues by the wayside, on churches… and recently also on cemeteries.”
Authorities are always loathe to state that something is more than an accident, especially if the suspects happen to be migrants. But it is suspicious considering the latest incidents in both France and Germany.