Bernard Delanoe, the Mayor of Paris, this week expressed his opposition to a proposed Russian Orthodox Cathedral on the banks of the Seine near the Eiffel Tower. According to Reuters’s FaithWorld blog, Delanoe’s opposition has nothing to do with religion. He simply thinks the proposed design of the cathedral, with onion-shaped domes and a wavy glass roof, lacks éclat. The design is “mediocre architecture conceived in haste,” he complains. France gave its approval for the project two years ago — “without the agreement of the city of Paris,” Delanoe notes — and Delanoe seems to lack authority to stop it now. In fact, he’s asking for UNESCO, the UN body that granted protected “World Heritage Site” status to the Seine riverbank,  to intervene “so that no permission” for construction “can be given without the endorsement of international experts.” Wonder if France has a version of RLUIPA.

Leave a Reply