Crucifix won’t be back at Montreal’s City Hall after renovations. Photo from Wikimedia Commons

Crucifix evicted from City Hall

By  Catholic News Agency
  • March 31, 2019

A crucifix that has hung on the wall of Montreal’s City Hall since 1937, reminding city officials to let God guide their decisions, will be taken down for a renovation project, never to be put back.

City councillor Laurence Lavigne-Lalonde made the announcement at an executive council meeting March 20.

“The crucifix was installed during an era that was completely different than the one we live in today,” Lavigne-Lalonde told the council, according to CTV.

“We now live in a society that has evolved and is represented by democratic institutions that must be secular, neutral and open to all citizens,” Lavigne-Lalonde added. Montreal Mayor Valerie Plante agreed.

“I truly believe and based on all the discussion that has been done in the past, that it doesn’t have to be in city council where it is a secular institution,” she said. Plante told the CBC the crucifix will be put in a museum space in City Hall.

The Archdiocese of Montreal issued a statement saying that the crucifix doesn’t need to be removed in a religiously pluralistic society.

“As a sign revered by Christians, the crucifix remains a living symbol. It symbolizes openness and respect toward all peoples, including toward other faith communities and religious traditions, which rightfully adhere to their own signs and symbols,” Archbishop Christian Lépine said.

“Nevertheless, nothing forbids us, and our respective beliefs, from being present in the public space in an attitude of respect and openness, since we share the same common humanity,” he added.

“When it comes to transmitting spiritual and communal values in a spirit of togetherness and solidarity, the crucifix is laden with meaning, expressing and encapsulating what fortifies the population of Montreal since its foundation, a legacy of which we can be proud.


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Unlike many other news websites, The Catholic Register has never charged readers for access to the news and information on our site. We want to keep our award-winning journalism as widely available as possible. But we need your help.

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