UTTER SHOCK: Flames and smoke rise as the spire on Notre Dame cathedral collapses in Paris, Monday, April 15, 2019. Massive plumes of yellow brown smoke is filling the air above Notre Dame Cathedral and ash is falling on tourists and others around the island that marks the center of Paris.
UTTER SHOCK: Flames and smoke rise as the spire on Notre Dame cathedral collapses in Paris, Monday, April 15, 2019. Massive plumes of yellow brown smoke is filling the air above Notre Dame Cathedral and ash is falling on tourists and others around the island that marks the center of Paris. Diana Ayanna

Hero fireys risk everything to save relics in Cathedral

WAKING up to the devastating news that parts of Notre Dame Cathedral burnt down last night during Holy Week sent shock waves through my entire body, not just for me but millions of people worldwide.

Feelings of disbelief went through my mind. "How could this be happening?”

I've visited Paris multiple times and have sat among parishioners and tourists during a sermon in the 850-year-old cathedral, which is the liturgical centre of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Paris and resembles its close affiliation with Catholicism.

The spire and parts of Notre Dame cathedral is on fire in Paris, Monday, April 15, 2019. A catastrophic fire engulfed the upper reaches of Paris' soaring Notre Dame Cathedral as it was undergoing renovations Monday, threatening one of the greatest architectural treasures of the Western world as tourists and Parisians looked on aghast from the streets below.
The spire and parts of Notre Dame cathedral is on fire in Paris, Monday, April 15, 2019. A catastrophic fire engulfed the upper reaches of Paris' soaring Notre Dame Cathedral as it was undergoing renovations Monday, threatening one of the greatest architectural treasures of the Western world as tourists and Parisians looked on aghast from the streets below. Dominique Bichon

Many coronations were held at Notre Dame including Henry VI of England who was crowned 'King of France', followed by Napoleon Bonaparte, crowned Napoleon I in 1804.

I can recall gazing at the three rose windows, a feature of Gothic architecture, and thinking 'wow, this is incredible'.

Although the cathedral suffered extensive damage, including the collapse of the cathedral's spire, the two main towers remained intact.

Our firefighters are absolute heroes. Four hundred of them formed a human chain to save Jesus Christ's Crown of Thorns, the tunic of Saint Louis and several other major works now safely stored at Paris City Hall.

According to various reports, billionaire Francois-Henri Pinault and his family have pledged $158million dollars to help rebuild it.

We will stand by you, Paris!

Gympie Times


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