EUGENE, Ore. -- Catholics and lovers of history in Lane County are devastated by the scenes of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris up in flames.
KEZI 9 News spoke with members of the Catholic Church community who said the timing couldn't be worse.
The week before Easter is Holy Week, and if the circumstances were different, the cathedral would be getting ready to display its holy relics on Good Friday.
Father Bryce McProud from St. Mary Catholic Church said Notre Dame is a symbol of faithfulness in the Catholic Church.
Notre Dame means "Our Lady," representing the Virgin Mary, which is central to the Catholic faith.
"It's very sad, I could cry," said Nancy Nau, a Springfield resident. "I can't imagine it being gone. We've been there a couple different times. I can't imagine that it's gone."
Nau said seeing the cathedral in person is breathtaking and said it's a sense of history you can feel but can't explain.
Fire officials said the vaulted ceiling helped prevent much of the altar from burning.
French President Emmanuel Macron said a fundraising campaign to restore the cathedral will be launched on Tuesday.
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