Paris: Church of St Peter of Chaillot!!

Now already a good thing, as looking back on old post to bring them to life, update, revise etc; I found monuments that were hardly mentioned or none of all as the case of the Church of St Peter of Chaillot or église Saint Pierre de Chaillot. It’s time I tell you about this wonderful church of Paris! The pictures are from 2016/2017 thereabout.

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Saint-Pierre-de-Chaillot Church  is located at 31 Marceau Avenue in the 16éme district or arrondissement of Paris, near the corner between Avenue Marceau and Rue de Chaillot, also offering an entrance at 26 Rue de Chaillot. The parish of Saint-Pierre de Chaillot dates back to the 11C. The present Church is built in the 1930’s, two times, and completed in 1938 the old Church opened on the Rue de Chaillot, only a Chapel with a brick façade opened on Avenue Marceau. There is nothing left of this old church except a statue of the Virgin of Chaillot.  Initially, the new Church was to be isolated, but the surrounding buildings were never demolished. After , rebuilding the wonderful organ there is now a Festival every two years here ;the Festival Chaillot-Grandes Orgues. The Church is done in a Greek cross style with a belltower of 62 meters. Here the funerals of Marcel Proust were carried out in 1922, with only the statue of the Virgin remaining from this period; the current building is call the ” Cathédrale” or Cathedral.

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The church was inaugurated on 18 May 1938. The Nunciature de Paris is located on Avenue du Président-Wilson, at the bottom of Avenue Marceau. The Church of Saint Peter of Chaillot is thus the parish of the Apostolic nuncio. Thus between 1945 and 1953, Monseigneur Roncalli, future John XXIII, frequented the Church.

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Formerly, in the 11C, there was a first Church dedicated to Saint Peter. Another sanctuary succeeded him in the 17C. The latter was the property of the city of Paris since the laws of 1905. The city retained the property of the new Church-although built on private donations only-because the land belonged to it.  The Church was built from 1933 to 1938 in a Romano-Byzantine style, it is reinforced frame concrete, the coating is stone. Its slightly dark interior is adorned with large frescoes painted on concrete by Nicolas Untersteller  while the Mauméjean brothers made the stained-glass windows which illuminate the church. The sculptures are the work of Henri Bouchard.

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The Church of Saint-Pierre-de-Chaillot is one of the major concrete churches of Paris, and  a tourist area where it is located assures visitors and faithful. Well not really, visitors not many, locals a few more. It needs to be discovered by the visitors. The area is superb.

It has a triangular eardrum sculpted by Henri Bouchard on the façade. The sculptures of the left illustrate the evangelical life of the Apostle Peter from the time of Jesus. The straight sculptures tell us his apostolic life, his vocation and his martyrdom.  The frescoes by Nicolas Untersteller . The artist painted four large frescoes on the arches and pillars. He first engraved the outline of the drawing on the walls, then he posed the painting without completely eliminating the concrete. The result is very well aligned with the architecture.

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The work of Untersteller in summary of the  Creed representing the spiritual life of the Church associated with its symbols, such as Faith (through the sacraments, liturgical feasts); Holy (Beatitudes, theological virtues, cardinals, lives of the Saints),  Catholic (thus universal through the great Evangelizers), and  Apostolic (it is based on the apostles, the Evangelists, the councils).

The Church is built on a Greek cross style with five cupolas of octagonal shape. The bell tower is 62 meters high and it is to the left of the main façade on Avenue Marceau. It is a low Church, invisible from the outside, built as a crypt under the main Church. The large eardrum a triangular composition on the life of Saint Peter carved by Henri Bouchard above the three portals of the main façade.

Important people had their funerals here such as Philippe Lichtenstein ,French Colonel, 1892; Guy de Maupassant, French writer, 1893, and Marcel Proust  French writer, 1922.  From the old Church of Saint-Pierre-De-Chaillot, where Marcel Proust’s funeral took place on November 21, 1922, only a statue of the Virgin remains. The current church, sometimes dubbed the “Cathedral”, was inaugurated by Cardinal Verdier, on May 18, 1938.  Built to accommodate 1400 people, Saint-Pierre-De-Chaillot has the peculiarity of being the parish of the Apostolic nuncio, the Pope’s ambassador to France. The place was, during its construction, a true passage of artists.

The Church Saint Pierre de Chaillot webpage: https://eglise-chaillot.com/

The tourist office of Paris on the St Pierre de Chaillot Church: https://en.parisinfo.com/paris-museum-monument/71145/Eglise-Saint-Pierre-de-Chaillot

And so it awaits you the new artists of our time and all those travelers seeking history, architecture and harmonious living in our eternal Paris. Lovely church indeed.  It is an impressive big church with great architecture and engrave decorations on the walls, wonderful chapels and a nice modern prayer section; another view of Paris.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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2 Comments to “Paris: Church of St Peter of Chaillot!!”

  1. I am surprised that you did not find the way to the crypt, which offers a more intimate space for masses.

    Liked by 1 person

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