In Haute-Garonne, rugby player Fabien Pelous launches an appeal to restore his village church

In Haute-Garonne, rugby player Fabien Pelous launches an appeal to restore his village church

This year it will celebrate its 500th anniversary. With its red brick walls and its atypical bell tower topped with a Maltese cross, the Saint Jean-Baptiste church, from a former commandery of the knights of Saint-Jean-de-Jérusalem, has reigned over the area since the 16th century. small town of 1,900 inhabitants. The former captain of the XV of France and current municipal councilor of Garidech, has just launched, in partnership with the Occitanie-Pyrénées Heritage Foundation, a fundraiser to restore it. After initial repair work on the nave and choir in 2015, it is now the three-story wall bell tower that needs to be rehabilitated.

The objective: to raise nearly 72,000 euros to carry out masonry and pouring work to beautify the bays and install bells as well as a new carillon for the next Heritage Days, September 21, 2024.

An intergenerational project with multiple challenges

In addition to financing the work, the former Stade Toulousain also wishes to mobilize all the active forces of his municipality. Events will take place over the coming months to raise public awareness of the project: Basque song concerts, exhibitions, etc. On June 14, residents will even be able to participate in the casting of the bells, carried out by the Paccard foundry, the last French foundry and labeled a living heritage company. . A historic event!

For the rugby player, the momentum generated by the restoration of the church is also a way of connecting the Garidéchois to the history of the village. “To symbolize the five hundred years of the church (…), what could be better than two bells, which ultimately form the link between all the generations of Garidèchois?” explains Fabien Pelous to France 3 Occitanie.

Beyond a desire to connect young and old people around spiritual roots, the challenge for the athlete and the entire municipal team is also not to weigh on public finances so as not to make citizens bear the cost of restoration. At a time of budgetary constraints, the village could not afford such an expense. The help is therefore welcome and “the 500th anniversary came at just the right time” concludes the rugby player.

Similar Posts