The president made an identical offer to French PM Macron.

U.S. President Donald Trump said on April 17 he and Pope Francis had engaged in a “wonderful” conversation where he offered American assistance to renovate the fire-ravaged Notre Dame cathedral. The historic church in Paris, France, suffered extensive burn damages and partial ruination as a result of a blazing fire. Trump, in his social media post, said he offered the same help of construction and renovation to French President Emanuel Macron. The president concluded by wishing both President Macron and Pope Francis a Happy Easter.

The press office of the Holy See confirmed the event and issued its version of the meeting. The press release said President Donald Trump had phoned Pope Francis and the two discussed the Notre Dame Cathedral devastation. It claimed the American Presidency has expressed to the pope
“his closeness, in the name of American people.” The comments made by President Trump came a few days after a blazing inferno raced through the historical Paris landmark. The Catholic place of worship suffered extensive damage although important relics, like the Crown of Thorns, reputedly worn by Christ during his crucifixion, were saved. The fire led to the collapse of the cathedral spire and a substantial part of the roof. The main structure remained standing.

Trump, who ran a construction business prior to his presidency, had previously offered his business expertise when the fire raged and wrote a social media post pushing the use of “flying water tankers.” He was quickly roasted by fire and construction experts. The Civil Security Agency of France said the advice given by Trump could not be implemented. Use of water to douse fires in such historical structures like Notre Dame could result in the whole structure being razed to the ground.

The incidence of President Trump and Pope Francis holding a conversation came weeks after the pontiff took a shot towards Trump and the U.S. President’s efforts to construct a wall on the southern border of the United States separating it from Mexico. In his interview with reporters, Francis pointed out those who construct walls end up being prisoners of the walls they put up themselves. The pontiff made similar remarks to a crowd consisting of thousands of youth in Panama in January. He pointed out that those who build walls divide people.

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