“It is here, it is here where the martyrs are,Â it is here that the Sacred Heart must reign so that it can beckon all to come”. Â – Â Â Joseph-Hippolyte Guibert
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Perched high above the city, along cobbled stoned streets and winding alleyways sits the gloriousÂ Basilique du SacrÃ©-CÅ“ur.
Upon approach it was clear this place was special, so grand, immaculate in all it’s white, and such presence. Yet another magical element to this magnificent city, (the glory of its churches). I understand why so many pilgrims would hike these crazy hills to reach such a beautiful place of worship.
The church stands tall in the heart of MontmartreÂ (theÂ butte Montmartre)Â , once a principal artistic center of Paris. It was there in the mid-1800s artists such as Johan JongkindÂ and Camille Pissarro called homeÂ and by the end of the century, (with its counterpart on the Left Bank, Montparnasse)Â artist associations such asÂ Les NabisÂ and theÂ Incoherentswere formed, (not to mention being a stones throw from the Moulin Rouge, whereÂ Â Toulouse-Lautrec designed those incredible posters). Â Yes, a religious experience all around, and one I will treasure forever.
So, how does the Basilica stay so stay white?Â …Â SacrÃ©-CÅ“ur is built of Travertine stoneÂ quarried in Chateau-Landon (Seine-et-Marne), France. This stone constantly exudes calcite, which ensures that the basilica remains white even with weathering and pollution.
And why is it called a Basilica?Â … The name Basilica is given to certain churches granted special privileges by the Pope.Â
Just a little trivia this somewhat sunny Sunday morning, see you next week! -Â Michele