- REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer
- Jean-Marc Fournier, the chaplain of the Paris Fire Brigade, entered the Notre-Dame Cathedral while it was burning on Monday to save priceless artifacts.
- He was credited with helping save the crown of thorns, a relic Catholics believe Jesus Christ wore during his crucifixion.
- Four years ago, Fournier was lauded for tending to victims of the Bataclan terrorist attack.
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A French priest is being praised for entering the Notre-Dame Cathedral while it was burning on Monday to help save the priceless crown of thorns.
According to The Guardian, Jean-Marc Fournier, the chaplain of the Paris Fire Brigade, insisted on entering the burning cathedral and helped retrieve both the crown of thorns and the Blessed Sacrament.
Catholics believe the crown was worn by Jesus Christ during his crucifixion. It came to Paris in 1238, when it was given to King Louis IX by the emperor of Constantinople, according to New Advent’s Catholic Encyclopedia.
— Etienne Loraillère ن (@Eloraillere) April 15, 2019
The Blessed Sacrament is the consecrated bread and wine that Catholics receive during mass. It was considered an important thing to save, since Catholics believe the Blessed Sacrament is the body and blood of Christ.
“Father Fournier is an absolute hero,” a member of Paris’ emergency services told Sky News. “He showed no fear at all as he made straight for the relics inside the cathedral, and made sure they were saved. He deals with life and death every day and shows no fear.”
In 2015, Fournier was lauded for tending to victims of the terrorist attack at the Bataclan music hall, praying with and comforting those inside, according to Sky News.
Fournier, who was a Catholic priest in Germany before moving to France, served in the diocese of the French armed forces for seven years starting in 2004 and survived a 2008 ambush in Afghanistan that resulted in the deaths of 10 troops, Sky News said.
- Read more about the Notre-Dame fire on INSIDER:
- France’s superrich join together to pledge over $675 million to help rebuild Notre-Dame, as donations flood in to save the devastated cathedral
- The enormous amount of water poured on Notre-Dame to put out the fire could now cause it to collapse
- Heartbreaking photos show the 800-year-old Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris burning to the ground
- Before the Notre-Dame Cathedral caught fire, it was undergoing renovations