Tuesday 1st September at 6pm, CBS Mass for the Feast of St Giles of Provence (710), Hermit, with Hymns and Plainsong Propers. All welcome.
Giles first lived in retreats near the mouth of the Rhône and by the River Gard, in today’s southern France. Then he withdrew deep into the forest near Nîmes, where in the greatest solitude he spent many years, his sole companion being a deer, who in some stories sustained him with her milk. This retreat was finally discovered by the king’s hunters, who had pursued the hind to its place of refuge. An arrow shot at the deer wounded the saint instead, who afterwards became a patron of the disabled. In high esteem for the hermit, whose humility rejected all honours save some disciples, the king built him a monastery in his valley, Saint-Gilles-du-Gard, which Giles placed under the Benedictine rule.
[Many Churches are named after him, from St Giles Cathedral in Edinburgh, High Kirk of the Church of Scotland, to a couple quite familiar to me; after "events" at Holy Trinity Reading, the Church of St Giles-in-Reading became the place where I sang Festal Masses and Plainsong Propers for many years. More recently St Giles, Camberwell, (photo) Victorian architecture, SSWesley designed organ, robed choir, Mothers Union, Walsingham pilgrimages, modern Anglo-Catholic worship with Father and Mother priests, serving a mainly west African congregation who were authentically Anglican, provided me with joyful Sunday Eucharists when I had to be in London at weekends a few years ago. RB]
St Michael and All Angels’ Church, Dinham Road, Mount Dinham, Exeter, EX4 4EB