Thursday, December 8, 2011

marché de noel in amiens


Blessed Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception! How beautiful that, mere weeks before Jesus is born, we get to celebrate when His Mother Mary, our Mama Mary, was conceived!

Mama Mary in Amiens

wind-blown with apple brandy-laced
cider at the christmas market. yum :)


Yesterday, the language assistants in Evreux made a little Christmas pilgrimage to Amiens, a city in northern France, to visit the Christmas market there! The market itself wasn't terribly spectacular, but we had really nice, sunshiny weather, and enjoyed delicious food and lots of laughs walking around the city all day!

Cathédrale Notre Dame d'Amiens

We quickly realized when we arrived that the city was still waking up. The market wasn't open yet, and there weren't many people out and about. So we decided to start with the Cathedral. The Amiens Cathedral was built in the 13th century, and is the largest in France! It is the tallest Cathedral, and also has the most square footage. It is quite impressive. We snapped some pictures and walked around the interior for a bit.

you can't quite see the perspective in this photo...

it's huge.

Inside the Cathedral, there are beautiful statues, paintings, relics, and even a labyrinth in the middle of the crossing. The most famous, venerated relic in the Cathedral is St. John the Baptist's head. The fate of this important relic is highly disputed, in fact. Amiens claims that his head was brought back to the city from Constantinople after the 4th Crusade. There are, however, several churches and even religions who claim to possess St. John the Baptist's head. Even if his relics are not there, though, the Amiens Cathedral is a major pilgrimage site in devotion to St. John the Baptist, and contains other relics of this great saint.

St. John the Baptist, pray for us.

the labyrinth

After checking out the Cathedral, we walked a bit around Amiens and had lunch. With our stomachs full and happy, we went on a beautiful walking tour of the city. Amiens is called the "Venice of France" because it has a number of canals running through it. We found a number of paths along the canals, and the houses along them were so cute!

swans at the park

We also nibbled on some yummy warm waffles, tried warm cider with Calvados (apple brandy from Normandy), and visited Santa--a few times...

merry christmas from the best assistants ever

pax christi.

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