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Catholic Churches, Shrines and Places of Interest in France

The rich Catholic history of France is reflected in the many shrines throughout the country. Known as Gaul during the time of Roman rule, Christianity came to France in the early 2nd Century and took root despite persecution. Much of the great architecture and learning of the middle ages took place in France under the auspices of the Catholic Church. The French revolution unfortunately brought much of that to a halt with the desecration of churches, execution of priests and religious and general disdain for all things that pertained to the Catholic Church. It was allegedly the “age of reason” that saw no place for belief in God.

Fortunately, once that madness passed, many churches were restored to their natural beauty or else re-built. Today many of them reflect the original beauty that they possessed before the revolution.  And, despite what you might think, there is a growing traditionalist trend among Catholics in France, especially among young Catholics.

France is the most-visited country in Europe for foreign tourists.

And France is both geographically beautiful and diverse-a country, roughly the size of Texas. Traveling through the countryside you will find quaint villages, vineyards, the majestic French Alps, the Pyrenees mountains, the rugged cliffs of the Atlantic as well as the sunlit beaches of the Mediterranean. You will find each region of France offers its own special attractions for Catholic travelers both for organized groups and independent travelers.

And most of these locations offer special festivals and feast day celebrations throughout the year.

Here are just a few of the many sites of interest to Catholics:

Amboise:  Residence and tomb of Leonardo da Vinci

Amiens: Cathedral of Notre Dame de Amiens & head of John the Baptist

Annecy: Basilica of the Visitation (relics of St. Francis de Sales & St. Jane de Chantal)

Ars: Saint John Vianney

Avignon: Papal Residence and home to a Eucharistic Miracle

Bargemon: Shrine of Our Lady of Bargemon

Bar-sur-Seine: Our Lady of the Oak

Bayeux:  The Bayeux Tapestry and Museums

Bordeaux: Route of St. James, burial site of Fr. William Joseph Chaminade, Eucharistic Miracle

Cannes:  Notre Dame de Bon Voyage (Our Lady of Good Voyage)

Chalo-Saint-Mars: grave of Servant-of-God Jérôme Lejeune, Catholic scientist who discovered the cause of Down Syndrome

Chartres: Chartres Cathedral

Chateauneuf-de-Galaure: The Home of Venerable Marthe Robin

Citeaux:   Abbay Notre-Dame de Citeaux…birthplace of the Cistercian Order

Colmar: The Unterlinden Museum and the Insenheim Altarpiece

Compiegne:  Capture of Joan of Arc

Conques: The Abbey of Saint Foy

Cotignac: Our Lady of Graces & Monastery of Saint Joseph

Corsica:  Several Catholic shrines on this island

Dardilly:  Birthplace of Saint John Vianney

Dijon: Our Lady of Hope

Île Saint-Honorat:  Lerins Abbey

La Garde Freinet: Our Lady of Miremer

La Louvesc: Basilica of Saint Francis Regis

La Salette: Apparitions of Our Lady of La Salette

La Trinite: Sanctuary of Our Lady of Laghet (Healing Shrine)

Laus: Our Lady of Laus

Le Barroux: Abbey of Saint Madeleine & Papal Vineyard

Le Plan-d’Aups-Ste. Baume: Saint Mary Magdaline

LeBlanc:  Priory of the Little Sisters of the Disciples of the Lamb (Down Syndrome nuns)

Le Puy-en-Velay: Sanctuary of Our Lady of Le Puy

L’Ile-Bouchard: Apparitions of Our Lady of Prayer

Lisieux: St. Therese of Lisieux

Lourdes: Saint Bernadette & Our Lady of Lourdes

Lyon: Our Lady of Fourviere

Marseille: Our Lady of the Guard & the Abbey of Saint Victor

Martinique: Overseas region of France (Caribbean)

Meaux:  Meaux Cathedral Saint Etienne de Meaux & tomb of Saint Fiacre

Mont St. Michel: Saint Michael’s Mountain

Montfort sur Meu: Birthplace of St. Louis de Montfort

Nancy:  Cathedral of Our Lady of the Annunciation

Nevers: Incorrupt body of Saint Bernadette

Noirtable: Notre-Dame de l’Hermitage

Normandy Coast: D-Day beaches, American Cemetery

Orcival: Baslica of Our Lady of Orcival

Paray le Monial: Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque

Catholic Pilgrimage Cruises

New! River cruises for Catholics…get $100 discoount when you mention code CT Guide

Paris: Catholic churches, shrines & places of interest

Pellevoison: Our Lady of Mercy and the White Scapular

Pibrac:  Shrine of Saint Germain Cousin

Poitiers:  Several places of interest

Pontigny:  Pontigny Cistercian Abbey

Pontmain: Our Lady of Pontmain

Prouilhe (Prouille):  Our Lady of Prouilhe Monastery….first Monastery established by Saint Dominic

Querrien, La Prénessaye: Apparition of Our Lady of Eternal Aid

Reims:  Cathedral of Reims…site of the crowning of 33 Kings of France

Rocamadour: Our Lady of Rocamadour

Rouen: Saint Joan of Arc

Saint Anne d’Auray: Basilica of Saint Anne

Saint-Laurent sur Severes: St. Louis de Montfort & Blessed Marie Louise Trichet

Saint-Honorat: Lérins Abbey Cistercian monastery

Saint Maximin-le-Sainte-Baume  Shrine of St, Mary Magdeline

Saint-Pern: burial place of Saint Jeanne Jugan, Saint Mary of the Cross

Tarascon: The Collegiate Church of Saint Martha & The Abbey of Saint Michael of Frigolet

Toulouse: Interesting churches including the tomb of St. Thomas Aquinas

Tours: Saint Martin of Tours

Troyes: Cathedral of Saints Peter & Paul, tomb of St. Bernard of Clairvaux

Vence:  The Rosary Chapel by Henri Matisse

Verdelaise: Basilica of Our Lady of the Afflicted


6 thoughts on “France”

  1. Hi, On the coverage of the Tour de France last night from Gap and somewhere near Serres the commentator mentioned an apparition of Mary to a person at a village whose name I didn’t get. I can’t find information on your map. Can you tell me the village referred to, please? Thanks, Brian.

  2. Hello, I am looking for any information of NUESTRA SENORA DE REFUGIO – OUR LADY OF REFUGE and I can not find any thing…..I have looked all over the world. Can anyone help me?
    anything will help.

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