Religious parimony: Macron launches a collection on the sidelines of the Pope's visit

In addition to his response to criticism of his presence at Pope Francis' giant mass in Marseille on September 23, Emmanuel Macron announced this Friday, September 15, a subscription to restore thousands of religious buildings in danger

Religious parimony: Macron launches a collection on the sidelines of the Pope's visit

In addition to his response to criticism of his presence at Pope Francis' giant mass in Marseille on September 23, Emmanuel Macron announced this Friday, September 15, a subscription to restore thousands of religious buildings in danger. From the collegiate church of Semur-en-Auxois, in Côte-d'Or, a Gothic masterpiece whose preservation is precisely difficult for this town of 4,200 inhabitants, the Head of State launched a collection "to mobilize 200 million euros over four years.

Out of 50,000 places of worship in France, around 2,500 to 3,000 buildings, mainly churches, are in a state that raises fears for their preservation. For the most part, they belong to small municipalities for whom “these investments are unsustainable,” recalled Emmanuel Macron. This fuels a feeling of indignation among many of our elected officials and our residents because there is an attachment to this heritage, whether we believe it or not. »

This collection will therefore only be intended for municipalities with less than 10,000 inhabitants (20,000 overseas). Donations can be made on the Heritage Foundation website and will be tax deductible at 75% (instead of 66%) within the limit of 1,000 euros, as was the case for the reconstruction of Notre-Dame de Paris. A detail which aims "also, between the lines, to tell the big fortunes" that "the issue is at the same level of importance", slipped to AFP the Minister of Culture, Rima Abdul-Malak, on the sidelines of the Burgundian movement, adding to hope that the richest “will understand this message for themselves”.

Organizer of this subscription, the Heritage Foundation will select the projects "according to the heritage interest of the building, the urgency and also the question of the use which must be open to concerts, exhibitions, conferences", explained to AFP its president Guillaume Poitrinal.

“This reflects a reality, and meets needs,” Gautier Mornas, head of the Sacred Art department of the Conference of Bishops of France, told AFP. For Édouard de Lamaze, president of the Religious Heritage Observatory, the value of these buildings “goes far beyond the religious framework, and is part of the daily life, the past and the future of the French”.

This collection is in addition to the Heritage Loto, embodied by host Stéphane Bern. In five years, 230 million euros have been collected for the benefit of 862 projects according to the Élysée. The president also went in the afternoon to the Château de Bussy-Rabutin, winner of the first edition of this lottery in 2018.

According to the Élysée, the date of these announcements is linked to Heritage Days this weekend and follows commitments made by the president during his visit to Mont-Saint-Michel on June 5. No link therefore with the visit next week of Pope Francis to Marseille, according to the presidency. Faced with criticism from the left, Emmanuel Macron also defended his decision to attend the mass that the pope will give on September 23.