Outrage at plan to charge tourists fees at French churches

A plan by the French state to charge admission fees for tourists at famous churches has been denounced.

The culture ministry and national heritage officials discussed the proposal without telling the Church.

The rector-archpriest of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris said having a fee would make free access by believers almost impossible.

Msgr Partick Jacquin painted a picture of two lines at the cathedral, one for visitors and one for the faithful.

“It’s absurd – one would have to ask for baptismal certificates at the door.”

All religious buildings in France built before 1905 belong to the state, which is responsible for their upkeep.

A change to the law separating church and state would be needed for the fees plan to proceed.

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