Notre-Dame-des-Victoires is a Roman Catholic church and it is located in Basse Ville (Lower Town) of Quebec City. The original church was started in 1687 on the first town square in the city and built on the site of Samuel de Champlain's original outpost. It was completed in 1723.
In the late 1600s it received the name Notre-Dame-de-la-Victoire because the English were forced to retreat, providing a victory for the French. The "s" was added at the end in 1711 when a British fleet was sunk during bad weather.
The church we see today was restored in 1816 when the original was destroyed in large part by a battle with the British that preceded the famed Battle of the Plains of Abraham in 1759. It offers worship services and is quite a tourist site. In 1929 it was listed a National Historic Site of Canada.
I liked its clean simplicity, a minimum of the gold that so many churches seem to sport and the airy feel. Note the ship hanging from the rafters over the congregation.
It may be a myth or perhaps this is only in France but several years ago I learned that those in the fishing and shipping communities of Brittany in France often hung a boat over the congregation, a reminder of prayers for the safe return of the seafarers. In this case, it is a model of the ship Breze, commandeered by by Marquis de Tracy, a lieutenant governor in New France in the mid-`1600s.
Much of New France included those from Brittany and located on the shores of the St. Lawrence River, perhaps this is the reason the ship takes prime space.
The second church we visited was The Cathedral of the Holy Trinity, which is the home of the Anglican Diocese of Quebec and home to two parishes.
Founded in 1793, the building of a cathedral was a special project of the Diocese's first bishop. The building took four years to build and was completed in 1804, the first Anglican cathedral built outside of the British Isles. It was designated a Historic Site in 1989.
The church was modeled after St. Martin in the Fields (London) and Marlebone Chapel in the Palladian Style and funded by King George III, who provided a folio Bible.
Alas, I have no photos of the remarkable Georgian silver exhibit that was there during our visit, or the bible but it was magnificent.
The church has a wide center and wide side aisles and magnificent stained glass at the altar. Surrounding the altar are the words to the Lord's Prayer, the Ten Commandments and the Apostle's Creed. Notably simple and elegant and design, there is a minimum of gold leaf, primarily on the arches.
The third church was the Cathedral-Basilica of Notre-Dame de Quebec. It is the seat of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Quebec, which is the oldest in the Americas north of Florida. It is also a National Historic Site and UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The church has been at this site since 1647, though it has been destroyed by fire twice, including the 1759 Siege of Quebec. The facade is Neo-classic, based on the church of Sainte-Genevieve (Paris). The second fire was by a Canadian faction of the Ku Klux Klan. It serves as the burial site of several governors of France as well as Catholic bishops.
It's clear they brought out the big bucks for this one. There is oodles of gold. Way more than I like but certainly it is quite impressive. As with the other two churches, services are still held here.
There are some lovely details, beautiful arches...
...and a splendid Therese de Lisieuz. A friend shared this in the comments: "Mary doesn't ever hold a crucifix.And then I noticed the roses (so beautifully carved) and the inscription, "...tomber une pluie des roses."
"Après ma mort, je ferai tomber une pluie de roses" / After I die, I will let fall a rain of roses.
This is Therese de Lisieux. A/k/a The Little Flower, or the Little Child of Jesus. An enfant terrible, but what a personality! A French nun, she died at 24, I think, tuberculosis, after slaying everyone at the convent with her piety, her sweetness, her sunny disposition and frequent reminders of her close friendship with le Bon Dieu.
We might have stuck around longer to explore a bit more but church was starting. Nonetheless, an impressive place to worship.
As for me, I have been lighting candles, metaphorical and otherwise, for those in Houston, Florida, Louisiana, Mexico and the Atlantic coast, as well as the islands ravaged by Harvey, Irma and potentially Jose. I send wishes to friends virtual and in-person who are recovering from the storms or soon will be.
Miss anything -- here are links to Day One (Arrival) / Our terrific B&B / Day Two, Morning / Day Two, Afternoon / Day Three /