Friday, 20 July 2012

Eglise Paroissiale Saint-Jean-Baptiste, Braye sous Faye

The church in Braye is dedicated to Saint-Jean-Baptiste and dates back to the twelfth century.

After a restoration project in 1924, the church was registered as a historic monument in May,1926. Today, sadly, the church remains lockedwith access only by application to the Mairie.

Earlier this week we went to the Mairie and got the keys... The second photo gives an idea of scale... we certainly wouldn't want to be carrying them round for long!

The interior of the church is deceptively spacious, with a brightly painted chancel, and a feeling of light throughout.

There is little decoration other than the main and side altars. Looking back down the aisle the simplicity of design is apparent..

The plain walls are broken only by a plaque to the war dead of Braye and, of course, by a statue of Jeanne d'Arc.

The settlement of Braye has been inhabited since Neolithic times and although we were unable to find any, apparently ancient sarcophogi have been used in the building of the church tower. What we did see, however, was a magnificent crack down one wall of the tower...

Perhaps it was time to leave....

It felt quite strange having the keys to an ancient monument in our possession and we were rather relieved to return them to their rightful place in the Mairie.

What a pity the building is so infrequently used.... and that it has to be kept locked in the first place.


Susan said...

I love the trompe l'oeil sky! Very pretty.

The Broad said...

What a beautiful church. Our village of Aynac also has a 12th century church, which I'm pleased to say still is in use. It is in need of restoration and repair and fortunately this is being done now. It is interesting that while the French don't seem to care about their churches in many ways -- the don't seem to want to lose them either...