Monday, January 14, 2008

How I spent my Christmas Holiday

Novitiate tea with guests.

Colwich Abbey, one of the survivors.

St Mary's Abbey of English Benedictine nuns has its origins in 1623 at Cambrai in the Spanish Netherlands. At that time, persecution made it impossible for women to become nuns in England. By 1645, the Cambrai community under Abbess Catherine Gascoigne had increased to 50 nuns, and was living in conditions of extreme poverty.

On 6th February 1652, the community was established in Paris as the Priory of Our Lady of Good Hope under Dame Bridget More as their Prioress. She was a direct descendant of the martyr, St Thomas More, and had been taught at Cambrai under the spiritual supervision of the great mystical theologian, Dom Augustine Baker.

I was shown a room full of treasure. The library of books, many of them hand-copiedand dating to the 17th century, brought with the nuns when they fled Paris after being released from prison. A friend, who is a fan of Dom Augustine Baker, speculated that there are unpublished works in that room.

A beautiful and magical place.


df said...

Ooo, lovely pictures, thank you.

Anonymous said...

Didn't you see the other ones?