Mont Saint Michel
Architecture 0

The Placement of Mont Saint-Michel

I was fortunate to visit Mont Saint-Michel, an abbey in Normandy, France, a few years ago. This was prior to becoming Catholic and I admittedly didn’t quite understand the significance of this gorgeous church sitting atop a mountain. I recently read an article on Aleteia by Bishop Robert Barron which described the placement of Mont Saint-Michel on the edge of the world. I hadn’t ever given much thought to where a church was located, besides a city center which seems like an obvious choice. But, Mont Saint-Michel is different. As Bishop Barron writes,

“The mountain itself, and then the architecture piled so exquisitely on top of it, draw the viewer’s eyes up and up, beyond this world.”

Just google image it and you’ll see how out of this world it appears. But, the interesting placement of the church doesn’t stop there. As Bishop Barron explains,

“Jesus told his disciples to proclaim the Gospel everywhere and not to stop until they had gone all the way.”

If you have the chance to visit Mont Saint-Michel, you’ll see this is just the case. Built any further off the coast of France and you’d be swimming in the Couesnon River. I can attest to this by my not so lovely walk on the mudflats surrounding Mont Saint-Michel. I vividly remember each step sinking into the mud, pulling my shoe out and watching the water fill my footprint. It was a difficult walk and one I was annoyed with at the time. But, now I think about those who helped build this church. They went to the ends of the world, mud and all. As Bishop Barron concludes,

“Mont Saint-Michel was intended to be a monument to the thoroughness of the Christian missionary effort.”

Planning a visit? Don’t worry, Mont Saint-Michel is accessible without trudging through mud. I was just with a few adventurous travelers 🙂

Read the original article here on Word on Fire..

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