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Critics are bashing the rebuild of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, accusing renovators of turning the 850-year-old church into a “woke theme park.”
Under the new plans to rebuild the fire-ravaged church, confessional boxes, altars and several classical sculptures will be replaced by art murals, sound and lighting effects, and room for “emotional spaces,” according to the Telegraph.
Smoke billows as fire engulfs the spire of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris April 15, 2019. (REUTERS/Benoit Tessier)
Visitors will also be able to travel along a “discovery trail” that beams scripture onto the walls in a variety of languages, including Mandarin Chinese.
One of the sanctuaries in the new church will reportedly be dedicated to the environment.
Notre Dame cathedral is pictured in Paris, Sunday, Dec. 22, 2019. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)
“It’s as if Disney were entering Notre Dame,” award-winning Paris architect Maurice Culot told the Telegraph. “What they are proposing to do to Notre Dame would never be done to Westminster Abbey or Saint Peter’s in Rome. It’s a kind of theme park and very childish and trivial given the grandeur of the place.”
The Catholic church claims the renovations will make the building accessible and understandable to people all over the world. One critic countered that the renovations will turn the church into a “politically correct Disneyland.”
“Can you imagine the administration of the Holy See allowing something like this in the Sistine Chapel?” said a senior source with access to the proposed plans. “It would be unimaginable. We are not in an empty space here.
A pigeon flies over Notre Dame cathedral in Paris, Friday, April 19, 2019. Rebuilding Notre Dame, the 800-year-old Paris cathedral devastated by fire, will cost billions of dollars as architects, historians and artisans work to preserve the medieval landmark. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)
“This is political correctness gone mad,” the source added. “They want to turn Notre Dame into an experimental liturgical showroom that exists nowhere else, whereas it should be a landmark where the slightest change must be handled with great care.”
The cathedral was almost completely destroyed by a devastating fire in April of 2019, and hundreds of millions of dollars have been donated to rebuild it. French President Emmanuel Macron has set a goal of 2024 to allow visitors inside.