The Church of Sainte-Croix of Saint Lô!!

And I finally came to this historical town in my belle France. It was a pleasant visit and we will be back. I have other posts on Saint Lô in my blog, but feel that the Church Saint Croix needs a post of its own. Therefore, here is my take on it with new text and older pictures not yet in my blog. Hope you enjoy it as I.

The Church of Sainte-Croix was built there in the year 300 on the ruins said to be of a temple of Ceres . Later, the Abbey Church of Sainte-Croix at place Sainte-Croix, was built in the 13C, but it has been profoundly altered through its successive renovations, especially in the 19C.

Saint Lô

Consecrated in 1204, this church is the oldest Romanesque building in Saint-Lô. The bell tower, of contemporary architecture, rises on two levels and is pierced with bays with geometric shapes over the entire height of the bell tower. The second level is pierced with thin rectangular windows fitted with louvers. The bell tower placed in front of the facade is connected to the building by a closed gallery. The bell tower was renovated in 1957

Saint Lô

The facade rises on three levels, the central body of the church is higher than the collateral ones. The first level is pierced by three semicircular portals, the second is pierced by two semicircular bays surmounted by a cross, the third level is pierced by three fine semicircular lancets.  On the old porch is a representation of chained Paganism: a man, the pagan, is chained by two figures. The tympanum is decorated with a bas-relief representing the miracle performed by Saint Laud on a blind woman. The interior of the church houses sculpted Romanesque capitals: the weighing of the soul, Christ on the cross, the goldsmith at work.

Inside, the high altar is 2.25 meters high and nearly 4 meters long. The tabernacle is confined by an altarpiece with the twelve apostles who seem to be in motion. The altar of the Virgin, located on the aisle, is an example of the polychrome altars of the 19C, the bas-reliefs are the reduced reproduction of those of the Saint-Gervais-et-Saint-Protais Cathedral of Soissons made by Viollet-le-Duc. These two altars were restored in 2006.  Above the portal is the organ built in 1892. It was completely restored and inaugurated in 2003.

An anecdote of great importance me think.  On July 16,1944  in the evening, Major Thomas Dry Howie, Commander of the 3rd Battalion of the 116th Infantry Regiment (29th USA Division) received a mission from General Gerhardt to lead the attack to take Saint-Lô. While preparing for it, he was killed by a mortar splinter on the morning of July 17, 1944 not far from La Madelaine. It is for this reason that General Gerhardt wanted the Major’s corps to accompany the first elements of the 29th when it entered the city. Covered with the American flag, it was placed on the ruins of the church tower. A plaque affixed against the wall of the church marks the memory.

The Saint Lô tourist office on the church

There you go folks, a dandy monument in historical Saint Lô. The Church Saint Croix is worth the detour me think. Hope you enjoy the post as I. And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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