Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Feast: Nativity of Mary - Religious Treasures Exhibit in Orléans

Giotto di Bondone (1267-1337), Birth of Mary (in Scrovegni Chapel in Padua)

The Nativity of Mary is celebrated nine months after the solemnity of her Immaculate Conception, celebrated on December 8.

This feast, like that of the Assumption of Mary, originated in Jerusalem. It began in the fifth century as the feast of the basilica Sanctae Mariae ubi nata est, now the Basilica of Saint Anne.

In the seventh century, the feast was celebrated by the Byzantines and at Rome as the feast of the Birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The feast is also celebrated by Syrian Christians on this day and by Coptic Christians on May 9 (1 Bashans).

The scene was frequently depicted in art, as part of cycles of the Life of the Virgin.

Late medieval depictions are often valuable records of domestic interiors and their fittings - at this period the setting was often in a wealthy household.

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Impart to your servants, we pray, O Lord, the gift of heavenly grace, that the feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin may bring deeper peace to those for whom the birth of her Son was the dawning of salvation. Through our Lord.

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On Sunday afternoon, I travelled to St. Joseph's Parish in Orléans to take in the Exhbition of Sacred Objects put on in the context of its year-long 150th Anniversary celebrations.

The show is very well laid out in two of the rooms off the Parish Hall; guides are proud to explain the treasures they have on exhibit and to answer questions. Here is the official description of the presentation, the hours it is open and several photos of the rich treasures on display:

EXPOSITION D’OBJETS SACRÉS: Paroisse Saint-Joseph, Orléans

Dans le cadre des activités entourant son 150e anniversaire de fondation, la paroisse Saint-Joseph à Orléans présente une exposition d’objets sacrés en l’église, du 3 septembre au 3 octobre.

On y retrouvera divers objets, tels que des vêtements sacerdotaux et religieux, des ornements d’autel, des pièces d’orfèvrerie, des statues, des photos, de vieux missels et des livres anciens.

Des bénévoles seront sur place pour offrir des visites guidées.

La Société du 150e d’Orléans nous invite tous et toutes à venir voir cette exposition. Les écoles sont particulièrement invitées à venir en groupes afin de permettre aux élèves d’aujourd’hui de se familiariser avec leur histoire religieuse à travers ces objets.

L’exposition sera ouverte au public les samedi, dimanche, mardi et jeudi de 9h à 17h. Les réservations pour les groupes peuvent être faites en téléphonant au 613.824.2472.

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