Monday, November 9, 2009

Abbey Notre-Dame de Senanque

The Abbey Notre-Dame de Senanque was tucked into the Luberon hills.
Driving around winding roads through the countryside we began to
wonder if we were going to ever arrive. Then around a curve we spotted the abbey surrounded by a field of lavender.

Quoting from Rick Steves travel book:
"This still-functioning and beautifully situated Cistercian abbey was built in 1148 as a back-to-basics reaction to the excesses of Benedictine abbeys. The Cistercians strove to be separate from the world, and to recapture the simplicity, solitude, and poverty of the early Church. To succeed required industrious self-sufficiency-a skill that these monks had. Their movement spread and colonized Europe with a new form of Christianity. By 1200, there were more than 500 such monasteries and abbeys in Europe."

The industrious monks today make lavender products from their surrounding fields. It was past the time of lavender production and the plants had been trimmed into round balls waiting to again produce beautiful lavender next year.
Walking around the grounds was very peaceful.
I did happen upon vespers being sung in the chapel and enjoyed some moments of quiet listening.


Adrienne said...

Hi, Marilyn -
The next best thing to being there myself is seeing it through your eyes! Thanks for taking us along and sharing the beauty of the world around you.

Rosemary said...

Beautiful photos... and I can just imagine the sound of the vespers... such tranquility. Thanks you for sharing!

parTea lady said...

That is a beautiful Abbey. I love the bell tower with its columns and the color and shape of the building. Thanks for explaining the history of the monks and sharing your lovely photos.

Drop by Tea and Talk for my giveaway.

Mary said...

Hey Marilyn,

I adore all these beautiful photos you've been posting...I've just been too busy lately to leave comments, but I have been looky-looing! How I would love to travel to such scenic countrysides, and see these grand old buildings. You are truly blessed to have the opportunities!


Jeanne said...

Thanks for your visits and kind words.
I love to come to visit you.
Gorgeous as is everything you post.
Love you

somepinkflowers said...

i am so enjoying
my visits here...


i adore rick steves So Much
i have even DREAMED about him...

i love a man
who knows
where the free toilets are located
in major cities
around the world.

{{ he saved me once in rome
from certain embarrassment }}

Cathy said...

Hi Marilyn - I'm enjoying your travel post so very much. Your photos are wonderful and make me want to pack my bags and go back to Europe.

Brenda @Cozy Little House said...

What beautiful architecture, and such scenic country!

Gayle @ Mountain Moma said...

Oh, how simply lovely! I think every one of us, and each branch of spirituality reflects a part of the heart of God. They have brought us a unique reminder of the beauty and peace of the divine.

Angela McRae said...

This sounds like the very definition of tranquility, Marilyn! Ahhhh ...

Mary said...

How lovely to hear vespers at the abbey.

Glad you are enjoying the linen sheets but as you say, perhaps drying outside will be a bit difficult in Winter!