Nantes cathedral fire: Altar server charged with arson

Rome Newsroom, Jul 26, 2020 / 04:00 am (CNA).- A church volunteer has admitted to starting the fire at Nantes Cathedral and was charged with arson on Saturday.

The 39-year-old Rwandan refugee — who had been detained and released by the police immediately following the July 18 fire at the Gothic cathedral — was arrested again and indicted July 25 on “charges of destruction and damage by fire,” according to the Nantes public prosecutor.

The prosecutor Pierre Sennes said in a statement that the volunteer had confessed to the examining magistrate on July 25 to lighting three fires in the cathedral, Le Figaro reported.

“My client is today consumed with remorse and overwhelmed by the magnitude of the events,” Quentin Chabert, the lawyer of the accused told Presse-Océan July 25.

Agence France-Presse reported that the unnamed volunteer, who had been an altar server, was responsible for closing the Cathedral of St. Peter and St. Paul on the night of the fire, which arson investigators said appeared to have started at three different points in the cathedral.

The volunteer had been detained by French police on the day of the suspected arson and questioned about alleged inconsistencies in his schedule, but was released without charge the following day.

However, developments in the arson investigation led the volunteer to be rearrested, indicted, and detained in pre-trial custody on July 25, according to the prosecutor.

The fire at the 15th century Nantes Cathedral of St. Peter and St. Paul destroyed the Gothic church’s great organ and 16th century rose window. Scheduled Masses and a series of summer organ concerts at the cathedral have been moved to other churches in the diocese.

“For the Catholic community, this disaster is greeted with great sadness. The vocation of the mother church of the diocese is to bring it together in unity around its bishop. Everyone is at home here. How can we not think of our future bishop, who cannot be installed in his cathedral?” Fr. Francois Renaud, administrator of the Diocese of Nantes, said in a statement July 22.

Renaud said that much of the costs of the damage to the cathedral will be assumed by the French government, which owns the building. However the diocese will be responsible for replacing the cathedral’s damaged pews and is seeking donations for the construction of a new organ.

“The cathedral struck those who entered it with its light and the elevated gaze it elicited. She offered everyone peace conducive to recollection and prayer. We are deprived of our cathedral. But we are not deprived of the light and peace given to us by the Lord of this place. With or without a cathedral, our Church will know how to shine, I am sure,” Renaud said.

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1 Comment

  1. Rogatian & Donatian
    A Nantes’ resident told in one of this videos of the cathedral fire that he heard the bells first. It was unusual for a Saturday morning, so he went out into the street and then he saw a fire in the great rosette of the temple.
    On the same day, i.e. on July 18, the third Saturday of the month, the annual Santa Maria Greca festival was held in Corato []. Before people saw this acheiropoieton (made without hand) image, they first heard the sound of an invisible bell. In Corato, touched by the plague in the year of Our Lord 1656, the Holy Madonna appeared with the Child holding the royal orb. She herself was holding a three-armed papal cross in her right hand. The Most Holy Virgin as Pope? Crowned and not the boy? Because She, as Our Mother Holy CHurch, is the Regent of an underage ruler, both spiritual and secular.
    Who is this? This is the fire promised by the Lord Jesus [Lk 12:49]: “I have come to throw fire on the earth, and how much I wish that it should already be kindled.” Actually, the Fire, because it is a person, not an element. I identify him with the promised Paraclete and the great monarch of the end times.
    What does the fire in Nantes have to do with it? The cathedral here has the invocation of St. Peter and Paul. I suppose St. Clair, the first bishop of the place, erected the Cathedral of St. Peter, because he had brought the nail from Rome from the crucifixion of the Prince of the Apostles. This is also indicated by the location of the temple in St. Peter’s Square. Paul appeared on the stage of the Church after the apostles had been dispersed and after Peter on the Atlantic Loire. Saint Paul the Apostle is an antitype of the Second Comforter. The coat of arms of the Nantean cathedral chapter – a sword crossed with a key – perfectly illustrates the unity of the spiritual and temporal power entrusted to the Paraclete.
    Nantes is famous for the sanctity of the martyrs Donatian and Rogatian. Known as the Nantean Children, they have their basilica here (which was hit by a large fire on June 15, 2015). Their personal history, like that of Peter and Paul, is a kind of prefiguration of the relationship between Jesus Christ and the Paraclete. From the words of the Gospel [John 14:16]: “I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Comforter, that he may be with you forever …” [Latin Vulgate DRBO: “…et ego rogabo Patrem, et alium Paraclitum dabit vobis, ut maneat vobiscum in aeternum…”], it can be deduced that the requester is Rogatian, and the given (requested) is the Donatian. Besides, the Apostle of the Nations himself, before he was baptized, Paul (= Small) was known as Saul (= Asked for, Prayed for). If Rogatian represents Lord Jesus and Peter, then Donatian is the antitype of the Paraclete, Paul, and the great end-time monarch.
    The fire entered the cathedral of Nantes, consumed the organ (He likes Roman music) and the stained glass window donated by Anne the Duchess of Brittany. This is the Year of Saint Anne, because July 26 falls on Sunday, the main patroness of Brittany since her apparitions in Santez Anna Wened in 1623-1625. Saint Anne appeared to Ivo Nikolazic with a burning candle (torch) in her hand, heralding the arrival of the promised Fire-Paraclete. A century earlier, in 1510 (probably on May 26), Saint Anne appeared to Małgorzata Błażkowa in Prostynia on the Bug river, Poland. Did the Holy Matron also appear there in connection with the promised Fire? It can be assumed that it is, because the Mother of God’s Mother appeared there on the feast of the Holy Trinity, i.e. the octave of Pentecost.
    My variations on the Fire at Nantes are perfectly grounded in the words of the Lord Jesus to Marie Julie Jahenny in June 1882:
    “I will make my choice; I will call the true Comforter for my people and for my Church. It is He who will rebuild My temples destroyed by fire and brutal civil war, which, however, will end soon. I cannot name this war that will break out in France other than a civil war. ”
    The spiritual guardian (until 1877) of this Breton stigmatic was Félix Fournier, the then bishop of Nantes, the same who in 1873 initiated the construction of the magnificent basilica of the Nantean Children, Donatian and Rogatian.
    Santa Maria Greca appeared in Corato – many facts indicate this date – July 15, 1656, feast of the Dispersion of the Apostles. The first Twelve were sent personally by the Lord Jesus. Whom will the Paraclete send, no longer as a Child under the protection of the Holy Regent, but still in the closest relationship with the Virgin Mother of the Church? Whom will He send? He will send the end-time apostles!
    July 23, 2020, octave of Our Lady of Mount Carmel; Madonna di Altino, Albino, Bergamo, Lombardy, Italy; commemoration of Saint Bridget and Ezekiel the Prophet

    Today, i.e. on July 26, French media revealed the name of the arsonist: ‘Emmanuel’, Rwandan, longtime altar boy (rather Catholic), cathedral cleaner and sacristan, volunteer. Thus we got an unexpected confirmation of the line of my interpretation of the fire in Nantes – I suppose Saint Anne the Mother intervened in this matter, this is her Sunday and her Year. All this dramatic event in Nantes, on July 18 22020, can be summed up as the Emmanuel’s Fire!
    An associated Polish thread appears here:
    Two weeks earlier, on July 4, 2020, at dawn, the roof of Saint Paul’s* Church in Corbeil-Essonnes, belonging to the French-Polish parish, completely burned down. Firefighters participating in the action described this fire as “the small Notre-Dame” compared to the conflagration of the Paris Cathedral on April 15/16, 2019. ‘The Small’ means ‘Paul’ in close relation to ‘Notre-Dame’ in the Polish-French backyard! Interesting, isn’t it?
    * https: // The main image of the Apostle of the Nations in this temple gives the impression of a two-headed figure, just like the Roman Janus. Saint Paul survived the fire near Paris along with the One of whom he is antitype – the Paraclete.
    For the record: The Nantean Cathedral was built on the site of the ancient temple of Janus.

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