Places of interest

The Chapel

Chapelle

The first Chapel was built in Mary Euphrasia’s time in 1832. It was then refurbished and painted in 1857 in the roman style. Marks of the paint can still be seen.

The Sisters’ choir was transformed in 1945 and then reconstructed between 1958 and 1960. The stalls, established during this reconstruction, recall the ones that used to exist in all monasteries. The stained glass window is the work of Mr Jean Coquet, director of the Museum of Fine Arts in Lyons. Made in 1969, it represents the theme of the Redemption, Christ’s love giving his life to save all the people.

St Mary Euphrasia’s reliquary was made after her canonization in 1940. It is a life-size wax representation of her, and she wears the habit and blue chord which are characteristics of the Congregation of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd. Inside are some of her relics.

 

The Oratory

 

St Mary Euphrasia lived and worked in this room for about 30 years. She died there on 24th April 1868 aged 72. Nothing was changed in her room and office which were carfully preserved by the Sisters. In 1942, two years after her canonization, her office became an Oratory. It was then renovated in 1953 and in 1977. In these two rooms, some of her personal objects are kept, such as her habit, her shoes and her portrait at 29 when she was superior in Tours. The press divided into storage spaces which she had made to organize the voluminous correspondence she received from houses all around the world is still intact today.

Since 1953, the same lamp burning in front of the tabernacle is light week after week for each province of the congregation.

The Magnificat Garden

9_Magnificat

This monument, erected where Mary Euphrasia had her first office, recalls an event on August 15th, I834. It was the feast of the Assumption and the day when Mary Euphrasia was inspired, during the singing of the Magnificat, to write a letter to Rome cardinal Odescalchi. In this letter she asked for the creation of a Generalate for the Congregation.

The Chapel tombs

This small chapel consecrated to the Immaculate Conception was built in 1835 thanks to the generosity of Countess d’Andigné. It houses the tomb of Mary Euphrasia. 4 Superiors General who succeeded her and who are also buried here: Sr. Marie-Pierre de Coudenhove (1868-1892), Sr. Marie-Marine Verger (1892-1905), Sr. Marie-Domitille Larose (1905-1928) and Sr. Marie-Ursula Jung (1940-1960).

The mother-of-pearl Stations of the Cross was given to the community of Imola in Italy (near Bologna) by Pope Pius IX when he was Bishop of Imola.

The Labyrinth

Inaugurated in June 2012, it replaces the old Calvary.

It is a circular path where pilgrims walk. It symbolizes an interior journey, a pilgrimage. The labyrinth circuit automatically arrives at the centre of the spiral, representing our own interior journey. So it is a labyrinth to find oneself and not a maze in which to lose oneself. It is today a spiritual tool used by the Sisters during the retreats and pilgrimages and it is also open to the public at large (on reservation).

The Good Shepherd moulding facing the labyrinth used to be on the façade of the building that was demolished in 1997, alongside the street now called “Marie-Euphrasie Pelletier”

Brochure

The Tunnel

12_Tunnel_1

The tunnel is 55 meters long and links the gardens of the Motherhouse with the former Saint Nicholas Abbey. Bought by Sr. Mary Euphrasia Pelletier in 1854, the Abbey was situated outside the monastic enclosure which the Sisters had to respect.

The building of the tunnel between May and August 1855 was a creative and practical way to connect the Motherhouse and the Abbey while observing the canonical rule.

St. Nicholas Abbey, founded in the 11th century by the Count of Anjou Foulques Nerra welcomed women and girls placed in the care of the Congregation for several years.

Today, half of the building is occupied by the language school « Mission Langues », which welcomes and trains religious and lay people in French for their mission in French speaking countries.

Brochure