National Cathedral Repairs Begin On Anniversary Of Earthquake | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

National Cathedral Repairs Begin On Anniversary Of Earthquake

Play associated audio
A crew works to secure a crocket stone, which was blessed Thursday afternoon at the National Cathedral, before being lifted into place.
Patrick Madden
A crew works to secure a crocket stone, which was blessed Thursday afternoon at the National Cathedral, before being lifted into place.

One year after a magnitude 5.8 earthquake caused significant damage to the Washington National Cathedral, the first repairs are set to begin. A special ceremony Thursday afternoon marked the milestone.

The bells of the National Cathedral rang at exactly 1:53 p.m. to mark the one-year anniversary of last year's earthquake.

"It took just under a century to get the pinnacles on top of this cathedral; it took just under a minute to bring some of them down," said Frank Wade, interim dean at the cathedral. He offered his blessing to a crocket stone, the first hand-crafted stone laid as part of repairs to one of the grand pinnacles in the cathedral's center tower.

"The cathedral is built entirely by hand — everything here is handmade," said Ward. "You don't go to Gargoyles-R-Us and find something to slap on here. Everything is made by hand."

Up until this point, stone masons at National Cathedral were focused on stabilizing the structure. The medieval-themed cathedral suffered extensive damage to its iconic flying buttresses and pinnacles. A gargoyle even lost its head in the aftermath of the quake. Now, the delicate process of repairing the hand-made adornments gets underway.

So far the cathedral has raised $8 million of the $20 million needed to fully restore the building, after the Lilly Endowment today donated $5 million to help with the restoration effort. D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray requested $15 million in federal disaster funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, but the request was ultimately withdrawn to comply with FEMA's policy of not giving aid to religious institutions.

NPR

'Publicly Shamed:' Who Needs The Pillory When We've Got Twitter?

Host Steve Inskeep explores modern-day humiliation with writer Jon Ronson, whose new book So You've Been Publicly Shamed digs into the lives of people who've been raked over the coals on social media.
NPR

Our Food-Safety System Is A Patchwork With Big Holes, Critics Say

More than a dozen federal agencies play a part in keeping food from making Americans sick. Critics say the system has gaps, and we'd all be safer if federal food safety efforts were under one roof.
WAMU 88.5

Q&A: Maryland State Sen. John Astle On 'Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day'

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan signed a bill into law Monday evening declaring every March 30 "Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day." WAMU spoke with Astle at his office in Annapolis.
NPR

With 'Single-Stream' Recycling, Convenience Comes At A Cost

Many Americans now have access to a commingled recycling system, which lets users mix plastic, glass, paper and metal together in one bin. It's much easier, but not nearly as efficient.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.