Sunday, 31 August 2008

Visit to Lisieux

The Basilica is a very impressive building, but the nicest part of it is the Crypt, where we attended the Old Rite Mass on the Sunday morning. I didn't get any photos during the Mass, I felt a bit inhibited, since we'd had one old lady give us one of those severe French 'stares' (anyone who's ever visited France will understand what I mean by that!) when we entered the Chapel. The photo below is taken just after Mass, when the two young men were returning the altar to novus ordo-ability.

The Mass itself was somewhat bizarre, for those who are used to the Usus Antiquior over here. The Priest seemed very unsure of himself, presumably because it was so long since he'd celebrated this Mass, but what got us, was that the Epistle was read in French by a layman, from a lecturn facing the people, followed by the Gospel read in French by the Priest, at the same lecturn - neither had been read through in Latin prior to this. The other odd thing was that they all stood during the consecration. Still it was better than the New Rite Mass we attended in the Carmel; charity prevents me from saying too much about that - suffice to say, it seemed very modern there... (and what they've done to the interior decor of the Carmel chapel made me very sad).

But, the mosaics in the Crypt are lovely, and I especially liked this statue of the Child Jesus - it was hard to get a photo in focus.

The upper Basilica main altar looks like this ..

And there is a shrine with a reliquary containing Therese's arm at the side (not sure about the dancing figure on the cross above, though!)

Outside, round the back of the Basilica, we found the tombs of Louis and Zelie Martin. Although their relics have been translated, and will be placed in a new shrine in the Crypt in September, prior to their Beatification on October 19th this year, we found it a good place to pray and have our photies taken by our son ...

who had climbed up lots of steps to a lovely outdoor altar, which he pointed out would make a great place to say the Old Mass, and then he decided to oblige us with a few of the actions the Priest would make, if he were to celebrate Mass there!

As I've already mentioned above, there was a little disappointment re the actual Carmel - especially as the sisters now come "out" for Mass, and sit at the front of the chapel - no strict enclosure there anymore - but the side chapel with Therese's remains is a lovely place to pray. I have to admit, when I first saw it, I wondered whether she was incorruptible, but actually, that is a wax effigy atop the tomb - it is very beautiful though.

But the most moving place, I found, was the family home of Les Buissonets. I really enjoyed its ordinariness, (in a 19th century way!). I didn't take any photos there, but looking for some on the internet, I came across a wonderful set,
here on a lovely blog I've just discovered, called Laudem Gloriae.

I prayed for the intentions of all those who read this blog, so I'm sure Therese, and her Ma and Pa are interceding for you!

Thursday, 28 August 2008

Somebody Loves Me..

It's nice to come back from being away to find you've been given an award by someone, which Roses and Jessamine has kindly done.

She has nominated me for the Blogging Friends Forever (BFF) Award in the Recently New Category, and so I do hope our blossoming friendship can stand the test of time! She says the last time she won something was ABBA's Super Trouper album in a newspaper competition (when she was 10) - which brought back fond memories of a SteelEyeSpan album coming through the post when I was about 14.
The funny thing was that I hadn't a clue where it had come from for a while, until I remembered that months before, I had entered a competition in the Catholic paper, The Universe, with this as the prize - I hadn't realised that I had won it, and there was nothing with the LP to tell me I had either!! Ah well, it shows me age, I suppose, but I could still annoy my husband now, if I wanted to, by singing every one of the lyrics to "All Around My Hat".
Now, as with anything in life, there are always conditions attached to these things, so I have to abide by some rules, they being,
1. Only five people allowed.
2. Four have to be dedicated followers of your blog.
3. One has to be someone new, or recently new to your blog, or live in another part of the world.
4. You must link back to whoever gave you the 'Blogging Friends Forever' award.
Well, I've already done rule number 4, and phew, I'm relieved I only have to find 5 people devoted to my out-dribblings, but as to whether they can be officially classed as dedicated, mmmm, let me see, well, my newest reader seems to be Journey of Truth , and then there's my greatest blogging inspiration, Alexa. Now, as for dedication, well, I don't think Mrs Pea would waste her precious time away from her lovely children, but I love reading her blog so she gets one, and I know ukok checks in now and again, and then not to be too feminist about thing, I think Lacrimarum Valle should be my token male, if he's not too offended by such a suggestion!
Actually this has all been rather complicated, and taken up more time than I thought it would, so I won't be too surprised if these chaps don't get round to putting their awards on their blogs.
I thought I'd have time to write something about our trip to Lisieux, but I'll have to save that for another day.

Thursday, 14 August 2008

Beautiful Buddleia-Basking Butterflies!

What a delight to come back to this view from beyond my grubby kitchen sink! There are so many butterflies feasting on the buddleia, that I had to dash out and capture some pics.
This one obliged with several poses..

And I just managed to get a shot of this chap before he flew away!

We're off to Lisieux for a few days tomorrow, so Happy Feast of the Assumption to one and all - we'll be popping in to Reading on the way for the EF Mass, and to visit some home-schooling friends. And then in Lisieux, on Sunday, they should be having one of the first
Traditional Latin Masses in a long time, at the Basilica, (to which we were alerted by Fr Hermeneutic's blog!) so we hope to be able to attend that. It's funny, but when I first began to be drawn to the Traditional Mass, people used to try to convince me that the New Mass was a wonderful invention, that did away with the dry dull old one, and one thought would come to me, "But what about people like Saint Therese of Lisieux, and other great Saints - surely they were happy with the Mass the way it was?"
I shall remember the intentions of all you bloggers, and especially recommend the married ones to Louis and Zelie Martin, although I fear they may not be "in" at present - their bodies having been exhumed, due to the investigation in to their cause for canonisation. Apparently they won't be "home" again 'till September, still, I'm sure Therese will put in a word for us with her ma and pa!!

Been Busy!

Just to let those of you who are interested in art know what I've been up to for the last couple of weeks!

I am a pretty fast retoucher, and as my colleague had done all the ground work in getting this picture conserved, but has a bit of a backlog in the studio, she needed a helping hand to get the job finished; so I've been chained to the easel for a while!

This is what Our Lady and her surrounding Angels looked like prior to me getting the paint brushes and pigments out:-

And once the work was done...

And here are some "before" and "after" details of the top right angel, the second photo isn't very good as I took it in a rush at the end, but it gives some idea of the completed job.