Sunday, July 18, 2010

The Angels and Mary


The churches of Paris are, as an understatement, just stunning. La Madeleine, or more formally, L'Église Sainte-Marie-Madeleine, is one that I frequently visit. When your flight arrives at CDG from Atlanta at 5:00am and your hotel is not ready, you can always visit a café or a church. Not much else is open and the Parisians are mostly still nestled in their beds. La Madeleine is warm in the winter when it is raining (or worse) outside, and it is cool in the heat of summer.


This is a photo of the altar and to give you an idea of the size/scale just look at the chair on the left. The enormous statue by Charles Marochetti shows the ascension of St Mary Magdalene accompanied by three angels. Above the altar is a beautiful detailed mosaic by Lameire.


The special attraction to ma fille Holly is that her beloved and now deceased French teacher was married here many years ago.


I'll tell you another time about the music and the people we met at La Madeleine.

24 comments:

FireintheBreeze (Brittany) said...

you're right, its stunning. must make a trip there when i'm next in paris...which i wish was sooner rather than later :(

Julie said...

Okay, so how did you all find out this concert was on? What did you look up?

I usually just check out the posters on the railings beside the Seine, but this time I am looking for something specific. I asked this of VJ as well.

Do you know how I would find venues for sultry female jazz singers, probably a la 1950s?

Alexa said...

Great minds think alike (you and V)! Like I told her, I've been ignoring this place for 40 years—who knew the interior was so spectacular? Thanks for opening my eyes with your beautiful image.

hollyb said...

Thanks mom for the beautiful reminder of my most favorite church. Your sweet comment about Maggie brought tears to my eyes.

Genie said...

To all -- Okay this is too weird and I guess that Virginia and I really are twins separated at birth! Neither of us knew the other was posting about La Madeleine. Check hers out at Paris Through My Lens!

Julie -- Marie and I went there early in the day and she noticed the fliers of concerts. If you check the link on the post there is a tab on the La Madeleine website for Musique (in French)

Alexa -- I have found that you can not tell what is inside a church until you go in. Through many trips I have discovered some amazing churches. Marie pointed out that La Madeleine is very much alive and vibrant.

Holly -- I will never go there without thinking about Maggie, her beautiful life and the people she touched.

Brittany -- You will be amazed!

M said...

Genie, Your beautiful photo of the daytime Madeleine absolutely captures the vastness and beauty of the interior. I can see you sitting beside the red flowers on the steps just before we went in and is was blown away by this gorgeous church. I am so glad I saw that tiny, yellow poster as we were leaving and were able to come back that night for the concert. All I have to do is close my eyes and I can hear those gorgeous voices singing Mozart! a bientot mon amie

GreensboroDailyPhoto said...

Such a crisp and clear photo and just perfect for Sunday. I try to post something thought provoking or spiritual for Sunday. La Madeleine is just breathtaking!

Peter said...

So nice to find you in the blogging family! ... and I just prepared a post about the Madeleine, which will be published in a couple of days. Nice coincidence!

Genie said...

Peter, thanks for the welcome and for "following" -- I look forward to seeing your post on La Madeleine. V and I talked last week about "links" and both agreed that any topic you featured was worthy of a link. Merci!

M -- Yes, if it had not been for your specific interest in the music we would have missed out on the beautiful concert. I can still hear their voices in that vast sanctuary.

J in Greensboro -- Thank you for visiting and for your comment. Although this is my first Sunday post, I agree and will follow suit.

Nadege said...

I have been outside the church so many time while shopping at "Fauchon" and "Hediard" but I have never been inside. What a mistake. It is gorgeous and would love to listen to a concert. I love it that Virginia and you posted the same picture, but yet they are so different.

Genie said...

Nadege -- It is a quiet reprieve from the busy streets below. Once you visit it will call you back again. They have many, many concerts -- The one we attended was only about an hour in length -- pure Mozart at it's best!

Virginia and I have had a laugh this morning about the coincidence.

Starman said...

A Parisian once told me there was no point going to the Madeleine because it was just boring inside. Luckily, I had already been there and knew it wasn't true. Most of the churches in Paris have some sort of concert at least once a month. I've only attended those at la Madeleine and Sainte-Chapelle.

Genie said...

Starman -- Perhaps some Parisian's take their rich architecture and heritage for granted. I think that we all do that somewhat for our own cities and towns.

I have not been in Sainte-Chapelle in several years and would love to hear a concert there. I'll add that to my list of reasons to return very soon to Paris!

James said...

La Madeleine is such a beautiful place. When I was in Paris last year I noticed that they where having a concert on the day I had to go home. Hopefully I'll have better luck when I return this fall.


Welcome to blogland.
Btw I LOVE Paris too. :)

Genie said...

James -- Thanks for visiting the new blog girl! Fall -- that is one season I have not seen in Paris. Hummmmm......?

I think that the website has upcoming concerts. Even if you do not read French you can figure out a date and the program. le Mozart, le Bach, etc.. (jk)

Putz said...

a girl from alabama who has a paris blog>>>>are you related to vagabound?????????????i mean vagablonde?????????????i am a boy who at eighteen years of age rode his motor cycle everyday into paris from etain/verdun france as an american army brat, but still gleaned a lot of cuture from my stay>>>dac department of the army ciivlian>>>i saw most of what you blg about plus a girl friend also in the mix>>>write back>>i am interested in you>>>but in a nice way

puddinglane said...

I've been pass this beautiful church on the bus many times but never been inside - it's beautiful - I can imagine listening to Mozart here would be soo.. special.
Dianne xx

Genie said...

Putz -- I am related to Vagabond only in that I also live in the South and I love Paris and all of France. I think that Virginia who also blogs about Paris and I were twins separated at birth. Thanks for your comments -- come back soon!

Dianne -- You must plan on walking up the huge steps of La Madeleine on your next trip. It dwarfs a person standing at the columns and looking back down rue Royale toward the Seine. When you view Paris from a height, La M is quite visible.

Roses, Lace and Brocante said...

Genie
A wonderful post thank you.

My daughter lives in France so I visit from New Zealand regularly and always spend wonderful times in Paris of course.

I've not been in St Madeleine so I will make sure to do that next time!

I'm following you now and would love you to come and visit me one day and I'll get my prettiest French teacups out and make YOU very welcome!!

Harriet said...

The photo coincidence between you and Virginia just proves that old saying that great minds think alike. How lucky we are to be able to 'visit' Paris each day through your blogs.

Julie said...

Thanks, Genie. I am following up your link via Madeleine and the one that Owen left on VJ's blog.

Many thanks all ...

JM said...

Now that is a gorgeous altar! Excellent shot!

Vagabonde said...

It has been a long time since I went inside La Madeleine so I don’t remember it well. For the bicentennial anniversary of Chopin I wrote a post on his life – his funeral was at La Madeleine. I published a painting of the church at the end of my post – here is the link: http://avagabonde.blogspot.com/2010/02/recollection-paris-chopin-and-sand.html.

Genie said...

Roses - I have already been to your blog but I would dearly love to visit you in New Zealand. French teacups? I'm ready!

Harriet -- great minds or twin nut cases? hah! Don't tell V I said that.

JM -- Your photos are so perfect -- I'm glad you like it.

Vagabonde -- Thanks for the link. When I was preparing this post and looking for a good link (English) for La M, I found the Chopin funeral reference. Merci!