Sunday, November 8, 2015

A Sunday Visit in Provence

In the villages I have visited in France, outside of Paris, the parish church usually is visible from a good distance before actually entering the village.   Many or maybe I could even say, most, [I do not know for sure] have a community held together by families who have lived there for generations and still worship together in their local parish. Like the United States and other countries throughout the world, faith in God seems to be weakening. This is a heartbreaker...... but God is still drawing Believers to Himself for HE came to be the Savior for all nations.  France is not different. The cathedrals and churches are open and many are still welcoming Believers. 

One of my daughters and I were in France on Palm Sunday and we witnessed, first hand, the villagers all over town walking to the Parish church, "Notre-Dame-de-l'Assumption", with lavender tucked under their arms to line the stairway on their way to worship in the beautiful sanctuary. We had found our way, with me driving, [which is another story] to the small village of Chateauneuf du pape in Provence. We had rented our car in Avignon so it was no small fete to find our way to this village! The population is small, just over 2,000 people.  We knew there was a ruined medieval castle that sits at the top of the village and dominates the landscape above so this was our destination.  My daughter also knew the winery was famous there.  As we walked up the hill to the village center, we noticed lots and lots of people heading into the church. The Worshippers were celebrating their faith in God and preparing for the following Sunday of Easter.

This was a moving experience for me to witness this and see, first hand, their warmth and smiles for one another and even strangers. I am reminded again as I said earlier God sent his Son for all tongues and tribes. We should remember this when we, as a people, encounter others who are different from us. These French Believers were witnesses to me that day of their faith and especially the love and warmth between each other in their small village. They became a LIGHT on a to speak.

There are Believers scattered all around the world. We should be encouraged and remember this each day. One young boy in particular carried his lavender and walked briskly into the church alone. I still have this "picture" in my memory bank!  I love France and the French way of life for many reasons. This experience increased my admiration for this particular region of France.  I will treasure my time in Provence....always.....and hope to go again and again to learn and experience part of their beautiful culture. 
Many experiences make up our journey in life. Those we touch and those whose lives touch ours become part of our journey! Life is wonderful and what could be more wonderful than life filled with experiences in the French countryside!  And, by the way, my daughter did get to experience her French wine! Love her to the moon and back! She is a little French girl at heart! 

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