The local Abbot Du Detroit and the village priest, Father Du Cerceau, determined that the lighting striking and hollowing the tree was an event that had happened with holy purpose. So they built a place of pilgrimage devoted to the Virgin Mary in the hollow. In later years, the chapel above was added, as was the staircase.
However, a local whose name is lost to history had an inspired thought – as sometimes people do when they have to think at a speed approaching light. He renamed the oak the temple of reason and as such it became a symbol of the new ways of thinking. It was thus spared the lightning strike of political revolution.
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