The arts in Sainte-Anne d’Auray!!!

The city of Sainte-Anne d’Auray been only about 11 km from our house and passing by it many times in the week, It is one of the biggest shrine in France, and have several posts on it in my blog. This will be condense update of two older posts to tell you about Sainte Anne d’Auray and the sacred arts in the basilica. Hope you enjoy it as I.

I like to tell you a bit more on the Basilica Sainte Anne. The sanctuary of the patron saint of Brittany, Sainte Anne. according to manuscripts from the 2-3C  , She is the mother of Mary and grandmother of Jesus Christ! Since ,I have written so much on it in the my past posts, let me give some glimpses of what this is. It is the third most visited pèlerinage in France after Lourdes, and St Thérese de Lisieux with sometimes almost 500K persons in this small town, huge !  Saint Anne d’Auray is a religious town. Sainte Anne has a huge basilica compound here, with statues, memorials to the dead,and plaques all over, even one remembering the visit by Pope John Paul II in 1996. coming on the road D102, passing the necropolis or cementary of the French and Belgium troops in WWII as well as those of WWI and the 1870 war on the French side. Then you can see from the parking the Basilica at a distance ,and the statue of Saint Anne ,right on the park near the Mémorial to the fallen Bretons in the wars. A few meters from the Basilica you can visit the house of Yvon and Guillemette Nicolazic. Yvon was the farmer who found a figure doll of a Virgin in the fields and who heard telling him to built the temple.  This is Sainte Anne that which the Bretons consider as their grandmother is sometimes confidential or protective. It dries tears and comforts without judging or betraying. In the basilica, opposite the ermine-shaped reliquary containing bones of Sainte Anne offered by king Louis XIII in thanks for the birth of Louis Dieudonné, future Louis XIV, we pray to the grandmother of Jesus in the hope of founding a family.


Actually ,the main reason we came in this time was for an exhibition of religious artifacts from many churches and chapels in the Morbihan deparment on expo at the Cloisters of the basilica of Sainte Anne d’Auray. Free with a contribution as you wish.The display on the two floors of the cloister centered around 40 pieces of religious art.  Coming from the pays de Vannes and Vilaine are statues of Mercure painting of Saint Patern, scupltures of Saint Roch and Saint Sébastian etc.  Pays de Ploëmel (pays means region), is sculptures of Saint Anne , painting of donation of rosary 17C, sculpture of Saint James, etc. Pays de Cornouaille morbihannaise and Pontivy, wooden poly of the virgin and the child, 16C, etc. Pays de Lorient and Auray, chinese porcelain virgin of Sainte Anne, , the bust relics of Saint Cornély in golden wood, etc.  The cloister is the only remaining building from the 17C, and a historical monument of France. On top there is a gallery where permanent and temporary expositions are held such as the one above. This has become the Academy of Music and Sacred Arts.

The Academy of Music and Sacred Arts which is sort of a school and even over radio Sainte Anne as well as a museum of sacred arts. The Academy of Music and Sacred Arts in Sainte-Anne-d´Auray has become the largest cultural center in the pays d’Auray, (that is the agglomeration or metro area) with deep roots. Founded in 1999 under the name Center for Sacred Music, the Academy of Sacred Music and Arts (aka=Admas) ensures, through music and the arts, the enhancement of religious and cultural heritage, mainly in Brittany.  The academy is in charge of the liturgical music of the sanctuary. It also offers a season of concerts.


Some of the things to see here other than the music are : Breizh ha feiz, life and faith of Bretons in county of Vannes with traditional costumes, reconstructed scenes and everyday objects of Breton folk art are presented and evoke aspects of the sacred in the daily life of populations around 1900. The Treasury room, where pilgrims’ votive offerings are displayed, objects offered in thanks to Saint Anne, from the most precious to the most modest. The upper gallery of the cloister: Sainte-Anne-d’Auray, history of a sanctuary in Breton country; where objects from the Sainte-Anne-d’Auray collections are presented to the public during temporary exhibitions.

 Some of the highlight dates to keep in mind when visiting are : Beginning of May: Pilgrimage of Singles. June: Pilgrimage of mother’s. July: Pilgrimage of father’s of families. July 25-26: Grand Pardon of Sainte Anne. This is huge event overflowing the little town. End of July – Beginning of August: Festival of Families; August 15 – Feast of the Assumption. September: Pilgrimage of Couples wanting children. December: Christmas holidays with a living nativity scene.

The official Sanctuary of Sainte Anne

The official Sanctuary of Sainte Anne on the academy :

The official Academy of Music and Sacred Arts :

The Bay of Quiberon tourist office on Sainte Anne d’Auray

There you go folks, a wonderful little town with lots of traditions in my lovely Bretagne. The Basilica and surrounding is awesome and the Academy of Music and Sacred Arts is wonderful .Hope you enjoy the brief introduction and do visit, worth the detour me think.

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

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