After the world watched a fire consume the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, French bakery owners in Nashville felt the impact of a devastating loss.

“Heartbreaking. Unbelievable,” Guenievre Minniner, owner of The Little Gourmand in Green Hills said. “It's the one thing you never think of.”

Minniner and her husband watched in disbelief as their country's most beloved landmark burned Monday.

“It was kind of watching the world trade center on 9/11, when you see that iconic building so important to a country in flames. We were so lucky to have no human losses,” she said of the structure whose walls hold far more global significance than faith alone

“It's definitely the most important church in France, but it's not even that, Minniner explained. “It's part of the culture. It's the beating heart of Paris. It has been there forever. It survived the revolution. It survived two world wars.”

“It's always terrible when you feel so far,” she said. Minniner and her husband have lived in Nashville nearly five years. “Even being so far away. we needed to do something.”

The couple decided to donate 20% of their Tuesday-Saturday sales to the rebuilding of Notre Dame, symbolism that doesn't go unnoticed in their steadfastly French cafe.

The restaurant announced on April 24 that it raised more than $2,300.

Somehow the Easter symbol of building, rising - it will rise again. It will be there,” she said. “I just hope that future generations will still be able to enter that cathedral and see it as it was.”

Copyright 2019 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


Rebecca Cardenas is a Murrow-award winning journalist who joined News4 as a reporter in September 2017. She currently covers the court systems in Middle Tennessee.

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