Secret history of French villages - April 2019

Village entrance

The ancient monastery that turned into a village: a look at the long religious history of the tiny Loire commune that was born shortly after the Revolution

Sainte-Croix-en-Jarez, Loire, is the only village in France which was once a monastery and was turned into a place to live for lay people after the Revolution.

Many of the old ecclesiastical buildings are now lived in by the village’s inhabitants, but there are also parts of the monastery which have been restored and can be visited by tourists, including the church, refectory, cloister and kitchen.

The monastery was founded at Sainte-Croix-en-Jarez in 1280 and remained an active monastery with ...

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