Thursday, 10 January 2013

Unique Churches - Chapel of St. Gildas, Brittany, France

Chapel of St. Gildas, Brittany, France
Saint-Gildas-de-Rhuys: Statue of Saint-Gildas....
Statue of Saint-Gildas
The Chapel marks the site where St. Gildas, an Irish monk, preached Christianity to a local, mainly pagan population during the 6th century.  St. Gildas and his fellow monk Bieuzy, are said to have lived in a cave at the base of the rock where the chapel now stands. It is believed they had miraculous healing powers. Chapel of St. Gildas is locatedupon the bank of the Canal du Blavet in Brittany, France. This was once a holy place of the Druids and has been built like a stone barn over the base of a bare rocky cliff. St. Gildas appears to have travelled widely throughout the Celtic world of Corwall, Wales, Ireland and Scotland. He arrived in Brittany in about AD 540 and is said to have preached Christianity to the people from a rough pulpit, now contained within the chapel. According to Legend, after healing the daughter of a local Count who had been seriously injured by her husband, St. Gildas was under death threat and it was no longer safe for him to remain in the area.  Bieuzy, however, continued to preach and was famous for his ability to cure rabies. Bieuzy met an unpleasant demise when he refused to interrupt one of his sermons to cure the rabid dog of a local pagan chief who later returned and attacked Bieuzy with an axe. Statue of Bieuzy with an axe lodged in his head can be seen inside the chapel today.

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