Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris engulfed by flames

U.S. & World News

Parts of the Notre Dame Cathedral were destroyed in by flames on Monday. 

Today, the word is that some of the artwork was saved, but some sections of the structure are beyond repair. 

So far, investigators do not know what started it.

People all over the world watching are this story unfold and praying that the icon building will be rebuilt. 

NewsChannel 6 reporter, Devin Johnson, spoke with the local Catholic community. 

While many congregations are busy preparing for holy week, a few local priests say they are still in shock.

“I couldn’t believe it, that was my first initial thought,” said Father Vernon McKnight. “As soon as I got to the office, our office staff here said the Cathedral in Paris is on Fire.”

For hours, crews were on the scene working to douse the blaze at the Notre Dame Cathedral. The iconic building was undergoing restorations. 

The priest for St. Ignatios Catholic Church says many have worshiped in the cathedral since the 14th century. 

“Its a world art treasure as well, as a treasure as religions around the world and people who come see the beautiful sight. It’s a tragedy,” said Father Michael Hull.

Father Michael says the music playing inside of the Cathedral is an experience like no other.

“I was able to not only see the beautiful Cathedral but to hear that glorious organ, I was doubly blessed when I was there,” explained Hull. “I’m telling you its a treasure; I’m saddened.”

Both pastors hope the major piece of history can be restored. 

“It was over hundreds of years ago but at least try to rebuild the monument,” said McKnight. “Also, keep it as a memory of all the great landmarks that all of Europe take cherish of.”

“It’s a major stopping off point for nearly everyone whether they are Christian or not it’s a beautiful place to go and be alone,” said Hull.

Investigators are working to determine what caused the flames. 

Experts say the reconstruction efforts could take decades. Billionaires and companies pledge to donate more than 700 million dollars. Private pledges have toppled that.

Photojournalist: Gary Hipps


PARIS (AP) – Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo says firefighters are trying to contain a “terrible fire” at the city’s Notre Cathedral.

An AP reporter at the scene of Monday’s fire says the roof at the back of the cathedral, behind the nave, is in flames and yellow-brown smoke and ash fill the sky.
 
Hidalgo urged residents of the French capital to stay away from the security perimeter around the Gothic-style church. The mayor says city officials are in touch with Roman Catholic diocese in Paris.
 

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