Good Friday ceremony to be held at Notre Dame

National & World

A masked man walks next to Notre Dame Cathedral, in Paris, Wednesday, March 18, 2020. French President Emmanuel Macron said that for 15 days people will be allowed to leave the place they live only for necessary activities such as shopping for food, going to work or taking a walk. For most people, the new coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms. For some it can cause more severe illness, especially in older adults and people with existing health problems. (AP Photo/Francois Mori)

PARIS (AP) — Although still damaged and scarred by fire, Notre Dame Cathedral is — if only for an instant — coming back to life as a center for prayer in a Paris locked down against the coronavirus.

Just days before the first anniversary of the April 15, 2019, inferno that ravaged the beloved Paris landmark, the French capital’s archbishop is leading Good Friday celebrations unlike any others that have gone before inside the centuries-old jewel of Gothic architecture.

Archbishop Michel Aupetit will venerate a crown of thorns that survived the flames that brought down the cathedral’s roof and spire and horrified Parisians and believers across the world.

There will be prayers, readings and music during the Friday morning ceremony but no crowd. With the cathedral closed to the public, only a tiny handful of people are taking part. But the proceedings are to be broadcast live.

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(This story was originally published on April 10, 2020)

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