A German cathedral is digging out its collection of relics related to "St. Corona," the little-known patron saint of surviving epidemics, amid the global coronavirus outbreak.

Reuters reported that the Aachen Cathedral in Germany had already been planning to showcase relics and a shrine of St. Corona as part of an exhibition of gold craftsmanship, but has now accelerated those plans after the coincidentally-named outbreak began.

“We have brought the shrine out a bit earlier than planned and now we expect more interest due to the virus,” said a cathedral spokeswoman.

ADVERTISEMENT

“Like many other saints, Saint Corona may be a source of hope in these difficult times,” added the head of the cathedral's relics trove in a statement to Reuters.

It is unclear when the exhibition will go on display due to the ongoing epidemic and related restrictions on public gatherings.

Germany has confirmed more than 35,000 cases of coronavirus, though it lags behind other European countries such as Italy and Spain which have become the hardest-hit worldwide by the virus.

The Aachen Cathedral is one of the oldest churches in Europe, and was built in the 9th century. The relics of St. Corona have reportedly rested there since the year 997 A.D.