Friday, March 28, 2014

Sunday Evening at St. Ambroise

In search of some coffee, something sweet, and some people watching, we walked down the street to Rue Voltaire on Sunday during our Paris visit, and found L'Eglise de St. Ambroise:

St. Ambroise was built between 1863 and 1868 and was consecrated on December 7, 1910. I'm not sure why there was such a gap between construction and consecration--the Franco-Prussian War, the Paris Commune and its aftermath?--but it was consecrated on the patron saint's feast day (St. Ambrose of Milan)! The architect, Theodore Ballu, also designed St. Trinite and led the reconstruction efforts on Tour St. Jacques. Inside, we found beautiful stained glass and one most wonderful side chapel:

As you might suppose, there were stained glass windows depicting St. Augustine of Hippo, St. Ambrose's most famous convert, and St. Monica. The chapel dedicated to Our Lady contained beautiful stained glass windows (and there a matching chapel dedicated to St. Joseph):

Finally, my husband took this artistic shot of the shadows and the sunset (please note all these photographs are (C) Mark U. Mann, 2014):

We did find a cafe on the corner next to the church and enjoyed some treats and lots of people watching. There was a couple and a friend, I presumed, sitting and chatting at one of the cafe tables while their little girl played with a little plastic doll with long yellow hair. She kept dunking the doll in her glass of water--I'm not sure what she was trying to get out of the doll with such torture. We watched one family wheel their luggage by our table and go down the steps of the St. Ambroise metro (line 9). The father lagged behind, checking on something in the pocket of his suitcase while the mother and daughter waited at the top of the steps. Perhaps they'd been visiting relatives in the area and were heading off to Gare de Lyon for a train ride on the TGV home in the south of France? Other families rose up from the metro, and walked by the cafe with babies in carriages, dogs on leashes, and children in hand (and one in the womb!), going home after their Sunday excursions. Eventually we walked back to our apartment after experiencing an early Sunday evening in a Parisian neighborhood--nary a word of English around us.


  1. Sounds like a Georges Seurat painting that you walked into.