It is a sound of bell which makes react. The former Minister of Culture Roselyne Bachelot explained on January 5 on the set of the program “C à vous”, that certain French churches “of the 19th century” did not have a “great interest” and could be destroyed. .
“There is a religious heritage from the 19th century which is not of great interest”, declared Roselyne Bachelot, invited on France 5, for the promotion of her book 682 days, which retraces her two years at the Ministry of Culture. . “The state will have to refocus on a notorious heritage,” she continued.
Recalling the “strong emotional connotation” of these buildings “because the children were baptized there or their grandfather was buried”, she calls for the mobilization of citizens, if they wish to preserve these buildings: “It will be necessary that ‘they take each other by the hand (…) but we can’t ask the state. »
In her book published on January 5, Roselyne Bachelot further details her arguments. According to her, “the buildings built in the 19th century are dismayingly fragile and their simple security mobilizes exorbitant budgets”. The former television columnist estimates “tens of billions of euros” for their interview “by 2050”. This is why, she believes, it becomes “impossible” to keep everything.
This release did not fail to react to Internet users, including in the first place elected officials from the far right. MEP Gilbert Collard tweeted: “Hands off my church! In addition to these politicized reactions, others approve of the declarations of the former minister: “During the ultra-Catholic period of the 19th century, banal churches were erected everywhere to combat the dechristianization induced by the Revolution. It did not work. »
Rural municipalities generally take care of their churches, thanks to advantageous tax processes. It is the urban churches and the isolated chapels, often private, which pose a problem, especially if they are not listed.
— Arboit Gérald🇪🇺 (@ArboitGerald) January 8, 2023
For this other Twitter user, if the smallest municipalities generally take care of their churches, “it is the urban churches and the isolated chapels, often private, which pose a problem, especially if they are not classified”.
The classification of churches as historical monuments appears to be a lever for selecting these buildings. In a note on “Religious buildings of the 19th century”, the regional directorate of cultural affairs (Drac) of Pays de la Loire recognizes that the “heritage field” of churches in the region is “numerically very important”. In this context, in order to carry out “a reasoned protection policy”, it seems necessary to “identify the most remarkable buildings or the most representative of the styles and religious practices of this period”, writes the Drac.
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