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26 octobre 2007 5 26 /10 /octobre /2007 19:53

The Great Bell was the town belfry as far back as the 15th century. It replaced the old St. Eloi ( Ely ) Gate that opened onto the 13th-century ramparts and was used by pilgrims on their way to Santiago de Compostella.


On the right, stands the church ( 12th Century ) rebuilt in 1497. It was the main oratory of the Town Hall.
On July 24th every year, the Head of municipal corporation and his men ( les " jurats " ) took oath on the Lord' s Precious Body. Then they used to go on procession to St. Andrew's Cathedral.
On August 1st, they attended the Holy Spirit Mass and promised on the Cross to govern faithfully the town and to protect the poors.
This took an end under Louis XIV's reign, who nominated himself the Lord Mayor.
St. Jeanne of Lestonnac, who founded in 1607 the Congregation of Notre-Dame, was one of its famous parishioners.

Under the Revolution, the church was a warehouse.


In the middle of the 1970's the church was in a state of abandon, and the inside was ruined. In the 1980's the Bishop of Bordeaux of that time deconsacrated it. It was occupied afterwards by islamic squatters...
Now it is the main Church of Institut du Bon Pasteur, who restored it. The new Institute has permission to say Mass in Gregorian ( or St. Pius V ).



Cardinal Castrillon has recently ordained priests in St. Eloi Church.

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