Tuesday, September 27, 2011

St. Vincent de Paul and farmer's markets!!!


We should always remember that Christ Himself said that by gentleness we inherit the earth.
-St. Vincent de Paul

Blessed feast of St. Vincent de Paul! This great French saint is know best for his selfless work for the poor and underprivileged. And DePaul University in Chicago is named after him! St. Vincent was born in a small town in southwest France around 1580, and was ordained a priest in 1600. He dedicated his life to serving the poor and is a wonderful model to us now of service, humility, and charity. He died in Paris, where his relics still remain. Only his heart is incorrupt (meaning that it never decayed after death--a miracle!), and it is on display in a reliquary at the motherhouse of the Daughters of Charity in Paris. The rest of his remains are contained in a wax model of his body, which is in the Chapel of St. Vincent de Paul in Paris. I was blessed to visit this church twice this past summer and pray in front of his relics! Woah.

France is home to many important saints in the Catholic Church, but this country is important in a lot of other ways too! Easily one of the most characteristic and charming aspects of French culture is its farmer's markets. Found in every town and city throughout France, outdoor markets are a staple for purchasing produce, dairy products, meat, and other goods for the week. In Evreux, there is a market on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Some towns have markets every day, some have them once a week. It depends on the size and location of the town, and the needs of the townspeople!


I love going to farmer's markets (in Urbana, in Park Ridge, anywhere!), so I couldn't wait to check out Evreux's! Saturday morning, I set out for yet another adventure, eager to see what I would find!

This market is in the parking lot of the grocery store downtown, and it even creeps into some of the surrounding alleys. I was blown away when I first saw it! I was expecting some produce stands, flowers, maybe some local products like honey and wine, but what I found was a vegetarian's paradise! (With some meat thrown in...) It was a maze of fruits and vegetables--some I've never even heard of! I can't wait to try new things and learn some new recipes :) In addition to rows and rows of produce, they also sell flowers, dairy products like eggs and lots of cheese, mushrooms, wine, honey, cured and fresh meats, clothes, and pastries. I walked up and down rows of stands for about an hour! I was a very happy camper!

Look at all these fruits and vegetables! Yum!

I will certainly be a regular here, just like all the other townspeople! Next Julia Child???

pax christi.


  1. Maura, this seems awesome. I didn't know the bit about Vincent de Paul's heart. What an incredible story. Enjoy your time over there Maura and I'm enjoying my experience of France through your blog!

  2. I love how your blog sounds like an advertisement for France almost. It makes me want to visit so much! Thanks for telling about St. Vincent de Paul, I didn't know any of that story or that DePaul University was named after him.