Worshippers wear helmets for first Notre-Dame mass since fire

Worshippers wear helmets for first Notre-Dame mass since fire

PanARMENIAN.Net - The Notre-Dame cathedral in Paris hosted its first mass on Saturday, June 15 exactly two months after a devastating blaze that shocked the world, with priests and worshippers wearing hard hats to protect themselves against possible falling debris, France 24 reports.

The service was celebrated by Paris Archbishop Michel Aupetit in a chapel behind the choir, a place confirmed by construction experts as safe.

For security reasons, only about 30 people – mainly priests, canons and church employees – were admitted inside the cathedral for the service, while Aupetit and others wore construction workers' helmets. Some of the workers rebuilding the church were also invited.

The date was chosen as it is the anniversary of the consecration of the cathedral's altar, which is celebrated every year on June 16.

The date is "highly significant, spiritually", cathedral rector Patrick Chauvet told AFP, adding he was happy to be able to show that "Notre-Dame is truly alive".

Other worshippers could watch the mass live on a Catholic TV station. The video showed some burnt wood still in the church but a famous statue of the Virgin and Child appeared intact behind wooden construction planks.

It is still unclear when the cathedral will reopen to the public.

 Top stories
The earthquake caused a temporary blackout, damaged many buildings and closed a number of rural roads.
The Prosecutor’s Office has released surveillance footage and said that one of the detainees in the case, Iveri Melashvili.
Destinations welcomed 900m fewer international tourists in January–October when compared with the same period of 2019.
Austrian authorities said at least one gunman remained on the run at 1am Vienna time on November 3.
Partner news