EASTER SUNDAY +2021 The Resurrection of the Lord – Solemnity of Solemnities!
Notre-Dame de Grace, Honfleur, Normandie / Our Lady of Grace, Normandy, France – 4 April:
Our Lady of Grace is one of the most ancient maritime Chapels of Normandy. This Sanctuary was built in consequence of a vow made by a Norman Duke, who was very devout to the Blessed Virgin. That Duke, Robert the Magnificent, was once caught in a terrible storm off the coast of Normandy and knew, that a shipwreck would surely cost him his life. He swore, in the midst of that tempest, that was even then overwhelming him, that if he could somehow survive, he would build a Shrine on the hill, which he could still see, through the rain and surf from his sinking ship ,in thanksgiving to God for his rescue.
Robert was saved and so his harrowing experience ended, not in tragedy but instead, the duke kept his promise, which gave birth to a monument that millions of pilgrims STILL visit each year. The original Chapel he constructed was finished early in the 11th century, at a height 90 meters above sea level. That Chapel stood through the centuries until it was swept away by landslide in the 16th century. The present Chapel, the Chapel of Notre-Dame-de-Grace, replaces the original.
The site of this handsome Chapel of Our Lady of Grace, surrounded by large trees, in the midst of turf replete with flowers, is beautiful and calm, like the rich and fresh landscapes of the magnificent province of which it forms a part.
Our Lady of Grace appears like the fortress of Honfleur; from the little mountain which it crowns, the mouth of the Seine is visible, and farther on, the ocean, with its long waves of dark green, which receives in its bosom, the river of blue waters. Two roads lead to the Chapel – the one rough and rocky, the other smooth and even. In other times the inhabitants of Honfleur took delight in pointing out Our Lady of Grace, in reducing its steepness, in covering it with small, fine sand, so that a gracious princess, who had made herself beloved in these parts by her generous bounty, might be able to ascend it without fatigue, when she went to offer her prayers and vows to the Blessed Virgin.
St Isidore of Seville (c 560-636) Father & Doctor of the Church (Optional Memorial)
St Isidore’s life:
Bl Abraham of Strelna
St Agathopus of Thessalonica
St Aleth of Dijon
St Benedict of Sicily OFM (1526-1589)
About St Benedict:
Bl essed Giuseppe Benedetto Dusmet OSB (1818-1894)
St Gwerir of Liskeard
St Henry of Gheest
St Hildebert of Ghent
St Peter of Poitiers
St Plato (c 734-813) Monk, Confessor
St Theodulus of Thessalonica
St Theonas of Egypt
St Tigernach of Clogher
St Zosimus of Palestine