Fire at Notre-Dame

This item appears on page 4 of the June 2019 issue.

A fire caused the roof and central spire at Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris, France, to collapse on April 15. It is believed the fire was caused by an electrical fault associated with ongoing restoration work. Many of the cathedral’s treasures, including a relic of the crown of thorns, were saved. Sixteen historic bronze statues had been removed from the spire four days before the fire and are intact.

The stone structure of the cathedral (including much of the interior ceiling vaults as well as the central altar and rose windows) was mostly undamaged, meaning the cathedral can be rebuilt without replacing the original building. French president Emmanuel Macron said he hopes the cathedral will be rebuilt in five years. During rebuilding, a temporary wooden cathedral will serve worshipers at the site.