A parish committee has been formed in an attempt to raise $7 million to repair the historic Notre-Dame-de-l'Assomption Cathedral in Moncton.

In November, Archbishop André Richard, head of the Moncton archdiocese, said the 80-year-old cathedral — which was recognized by the Vatican as a monument to Acadians — may have to be torn down if it couldn't be repaired.

Committee spokesman Charles Leger said he hopes Acadians will see the historical value of the cathedral and that it's too important to be abandoned. He said the building is still structurally sound and it can be fixed over several years.

"It's a huge amount of money," Leger said. "But the flip side is, it's also a huge footprint of history that we can't afford to lose.

"If Acadians could find the money during the Depression of the '30s, they should be able to find enough money now that Moncton is one of the key economic centres of the province," Leger said. "This cathedral was built by individuals through individual donations, at a time when there was no money. I think saving this cathedral is going to be the same thing."

The group has raised just over $3,000 since Christmas. Leger said the money will likely be put into fixing lights in the steeple that have been out for months.