Notre-Dame displays crown of thorns on Good Friday, hears prayers for coronavirus victimsRecord ID: 1468836
- Title: Notre-Dame displays crown of thorns on Good Friday, hears prayers for coronavirus victims
- Date: 10th April 2020
- Summary: PARIS, FRANCE (FILE - APRIL 15, 2019) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF FLAMES BURSTING THROUGH NOTRE-DAME ROOF VARIOUS OF CATHEDRAL SPIRE COLLAPSING INTO FIRE
- Keywords: Easter France Notre Dame archbishop cathedral ceremony coronavirus fire good Friday rown of thorns
- Reuters ID: LVA008C8WS6KN
- Location: PARIS, FRANCE
- City: PARIS, FRANCE
- Country: France
- Duration: 00:00:15
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Topics: Religion/Belief,Society/Social Issues
- Story Text: Nearly one year after Paris' Notre-Dame was ravaged by flames, Paris' archbishop Michel Aupetit held a ceremony inside the iconic cathedral for Good Friday (April 10) amid restrictions during France's coronavirus crisis.
The event took place behind closed doors as the nation was on lockdown, with a limited number of people authorised to attend.
The service included a wreath rescued after the fire, the Holy Crown of Thorns, and music played by French violinist Renaud Capucon.
Kneeling at the altar in front of the wreath, Aupetit prayed for God to accompany those who have been suffering because of the outbreak.
"Today, Lord, during Holy Week, the whole world is ravaged by a pandemic that is wreaking death and that is immobilising us," he said solemnly during the service. "In this very particular moment, we ask of you and we accord to you all those that have been victims of this terrible disease."
As of Thursday (April 9) night, the outbreak had claimed more than 12,000 lives in France, although public health authorities said they've seen the first signs of its slowing as the number of patients in intensive care decreased for the first time since the start of the epidemic.
The fire on April 15, 2019 destroyed the medieval cathedral's roof, toppled the spire and almost brought down the main bell towers and outer walls before firefighters brought it under control.
President Emmanuel Macron has set a target of five years for restoring Notre-Dame, one of Europe's main landmarks.
But with reconstruction halted during the lockdown, the works' end date could be delayed.
Aupetit said that despite the tragic events, hope should not be lost.
"Today, we are in this half-fallen cathedral to say that life still exists."
(Production: Ardee Napolitano, Michaela Cabrera)
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