The Notre Dame Cathedral is known as the heart of the French capital with its foundation stone being laid in 1163 by Pope Alexander III. It is considered a feat of architecture as well as a major cultural and religious symbol of France.

Tragedy hit Paris on April 15, 2019, as this historical monument caught fire. The blaze consumed the building’s roof, whose framework all wooden dates back to 13th Century.

Just days before the fire, workers carefully removed more than a dozen medieval statues from the cathedral’s spire as part of a $6.8 million renovation project. Sixteen greenish-gray copper religious statues, which represent the 12 apostles and four evangelists, were lowered down for the first time in over a century as part of a restoration project. The cathedral’s spire, which was undergoing a major restoration project, collapsed.

“Notre Dame of Paris is our history, our literature, our imagination”. French President Emmanuel Macron vows to rebuild the Notre Dame within five years after a devastating fire Monday caused the cathedral’s roof and spire to collapse.

French media reported that a fragment of the True Cross and one of the Holy Nails were saved. The fire chief in Paris said his crews managed to stop the flames from reaching the belfry and prevented a catastrophic collapse.

April 15, 2019, will forever be in our heart as the beloved Notre Dame Cathedral will never be the same.