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Thursday, October 18, 2012

The American Cathedral in Paris

Today was my first trip into town since I started my chemotherapy - it's been 5 long months since I've seen Paris.  Took the train late morning, got off at Pont de L'Alma and walked up to the American Cathedral for a meeting.

This church was founded just after the American Civil War (late 1800's).  According to their website, it was consecrated "on  Thanksgiving Day, November 25, 1886, coinciding with the dedication of the Statue of Liberty in New York, thus reinforcing both our French and American alliances."

From the American Cathedral official website
It's a beautiful building (neo-Gothic) and has many lovely features:  wood pews with embroidered cushions, stone fonts, vaulted ceilings and meeting rooms with huge fireplaces.  Since they began the work the main entrance is temporarily condemned and you must enter now via a side door which takes you directly into the heart of the church.

My very favorite part of this church which always makes me feel at home (in spite of the fact that this is an Episcopalian church and I'm Roman Catholic) are the flags which hang from the ceiling on both sides of the main aisle.  There are 52 of them: 1 for the U.S., 1 for France and one for each U.S. state.  The Washington state flag (green with a picture of George Washington in the middle) is on the right-hand side close to the altar.

I arrived a little early and had the time to take a few pictures.

 Had a very nice time and made it home just before a thunderstorm broke.  Was thrilled to get out of the house.


Shirl and Rowan said...

OMG! I hadn't realized how limited you were, geographically. I still remember meeting you there at the American Cathedral and then the lovely cafe around the corner, too. I bet it was great to see Paris again. I miss it. But, as Edith Piaf said, "I'll always have Paris." Congratulations on your field trip!
Shirl and Rowan

Anonymous said...

This is such a nice post in many ways. I felt so much power in what you experienced with this adventure to Paris. I might add that you are such a good writer (hint, National Geo is calling). I am very happy, Victoria. Mike

Rosy said...

Gorgeous pictures ! You did well to get out. Funny how when you work in Paris, you never really get to actually SEE the city, unless you have to show out-of-town friends around. And it seems to me it was also Humphrey Bogart who said, through the clouds of smoke, "We'll always have Paris."

Victoria FERAUGE said...

@Shirl/Rowan, And it was a damn fine meeting too. Yes, I was kind stuck at home there for a few months. I was either too sick to walk down to the train station or I was too immuno-suppressed to be allowed on the public transportation. So nice to finally get back to doing things again. I always miss Paris when I'm away for too long. Though Versailles is a pretty cool place too.

@Mike, Oh, sweetie, thank you. That made my day.

@Rosy, It's a really gorgeous church. I know what you mean about not seeing the city when you work there. I used to travel a lot for business and I've seen many a conference room in many interesting places but not much else. We'll see how it goes but I'm thinking to use the time while I'm still on medical leave to get out and see some stuff in the area I have never bothered to see before. The canals, for example.