Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Notre-Dame Basilica of Montreal celebrates Christmas and light


While going through my iPhoto albums, I spent time re-visiting Montreal. What a beautiful, vibrant place to be. One of these Decembers, I'd love to spend Christmas in the largest city in Quebec.

Of course I'd go to the Notre-Dame Basilica of Montreal. Located in Vieux Montreal (Old Montreal), it was the site for Celine Dion's wedding to Rene Angelil on Dec. 17, 1994 and where Justin Trudeau gave his eulogy during his father Pierre Trudeau's state funeral on Oct. 3, 2000.

I've always loved cathedrals. The closest to me are the ones located in Seattle: St. James, St. Mark's and Saint Spiridon. Although they're not included in the top cathedrals of the world, they're still lovely.

But Montreal is so much more chic that Seattle when it comes to its sacred spaces and places. While St. James has a bookstore, and St. Mark's a cathedral shop, the Notre-Dame Basilica of Montreal has not one, but two boutiques! They sell Basilica souvenirs, religious articles and sacramental items such as rosaries, medals and books.

Notre-Dame also has a wonderful year-round show, And Then There Was Light.

Christmas at Notre-Dame Basilica is celebrated with three masses on Dec. 24: 7 PM (family mass), 9:30 PM and 12 o'clock midnight. Tickets are required ($5/$2) and went on sale in September. As of Dec. 1, there were some limited tickets available.

Christmas Day masses are at 9:30 AM, 11 AM and 5 PM. No tickets are required.

Notre-Dame Basilica of Montreal
Photo by Sue Frause