Monday, May 31, 2010

Full of Grace & Beauty...

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I wouldn't trade an afternoon with these Angels for anything in the world.

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They may look solemn or saddened to you, but trust me...they are not whatsoever.

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Instead, they are very devoted to looking over their loved ones, day in and day out...and they have been for the past 100 years. 

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They gaze upon their eternal place of rest and pray for everlasting life and happiness for those who lie beneath them.

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They are some of my favorite Angels that reside in the Grace Episcopal Cemetery in St. Francisville, Louisiana.

Grace Episcopal Church was built in 1858 and is the second oldest Episcopal Church in the state, housing one of two (circa 1860) pipe organs that are known to be in existence today.

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This beautiful Gothic structure was heavily damaged in the Civil War, which left the church unconsecrated until 1893.

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Surrounded by century old wrought iron gates, live oak trees dripping with Spanish moss and beautiful blooming azaleas, you'd never guess the trials this structure has endured until you walk the grounds...

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and read the sentiments left behind a long, long time ago.

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Crumbling tombs and misplaced headstones are not all what this cemetery holds, don't let these photos above deceive you.

There is much MORE grace and beauty that lies within :)

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There is a peaceful presence that blankets the moss covered grass with every step...

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and if you listen closely, you might hear whispers of welcome and sounds of sweet salutations from those of whom live here.

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In addition to Angels, most of the tombs are surrounded by beautifully ornate wrought iron gates that continue to hold the families together...

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proudly boasting the family name.

Austen

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Brewer

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Rucker

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Harbour

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(these were just to name a few...there were many)

Then there are the majestic tombs that catch the eye from a distance, impossible to remain unnoticed amidst the century old live oaks...

Magearl

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Smith

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Powell

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Newsham

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Unknown

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I could post so many more photos...I spent hours here and it still wasn't enough time for me as I didn't even see half of the cemetery. Seriously, I swear...not even half of it.

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This place of Grace & Beauty will have to remain on my list of places to visit again soon and pick up where I left off, hoping to stroll through a little more slower the next time.

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And maybe next time, I'll pack myself a lunchbox and sit among my favorite Angels.

I'll look forward to listening for the whispers of welcome from those who live there...

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Beneath the trees that hold so much history...

Beneath the blanket of peace  :)

*****

If you are interested, you can read more about Grace Church Yard here.

40 comments:

Geralyn Gray said...

Great post....today is about remembering.......god bless all who have served our country and all who remember them.

Theresa said...

WOW, gorgeous pictures! I wish was there walking right beside you! I love the iron gates and the tombstones covered in greenery! Sounds like you had a great walk among the angels! Enjoy your day my friend! HUGS!

Jane said...

What a beautiful place. Your post took me right there with you. You have such a gift for storytelling and photography. I can only imagine the history of all the families that are still together in their final resting place.
Jane

A Cottage Muse said...

Just beautiful Jodie!

BEAR's Mom said...

Great timing to read your post Jodie...I don't have enough uumph today to walk along with hubby to watch the Memorial Day Parade, only 1 block away...
but I'm reading your post with fife and drum playing in the background...
I love old cemeteries. 1993 - 2003 I worked as a church secretary in one of the oldest UCC churches in the states. I spent many lunch hours roaming the old sections of the cemetery...peaceful.
Thanks for reminding me...
Enjoy your Memorial Day!
~Victoria~

Janet Ghio said...

Fabulous photos and such interesting history. I would love to go here!!

Tarnished and Tarnished said...

Jodie my angelic little friend,
Those angels are beautiful & those old cemeteries take my breath away. I love to read the tombstones & imagine their lives & how they might have died, especially if they are younger. I'm not morbid I promise. One time I found a old one in a small town where there were just hundreds of small children buried. It pained my heart to read their names & how young they were, babies really. It must have been a horrible sickness than ran through the town & took their angels to heaven. Thanks for bringing us on another journey. Have a wonderful holiday sweetie. Lisa

Pierelantijntjes said...

What a beautiful place. Those angels are so beautiful. I love all the details you let us see Jodie.
Hugs from Ester

Keep Calm and Decorate said...

What a beautiful place and so peaceful!

Terri(TerriBoog) said...

Thank you for such a beautiful tour, Jodie! I will make a note to visit if we ever get down that way. Your pictures were just wonderful and like you, I'd love to have a picnic lunch amongst the angels.

MosaicMagpie said...

I have been spending time in cemeteries as well. One of my favorite places to think and be inspired. I wonder how they were able to do such precise carvings years ago.
Debbie

C'est Magnifique said...

Wow, those pictures are absolutely stunning and I'm sure it was even better in person, I hope to be able to visit some of those old cemeteries one day. Thanks for sharing!

Tania

The Victorian Parlor said...

Jodie,

I LOVE this post! I love old cemeteries and this one is beautiful. You did such a great job capturing the majestic grace of all the trees and the ornate ironwork. The old tombstones are so pretty and I especially like the ones with angels. Your words for each picture made the post even more beautiful. Wow-I could have spent the entire day there taking pictures!


Blessings,

Kim

Linda said...

Jodie what a lovely post! I can feel the peace and tranquility of this place from your words and photos! I would love to join you on a visit there! A walk, a talk and lunch! Beauty all around us.

Happy Memorial Day my friend!

Linda

Claudia said...

What a beautiful cemetery. I feel peaceful just looking at your wonderful photos. Thank you.

xo
Claudia

FILIGREE MOON said...

Jodie, your photos and writing are enchanting! This post, with all the beautiful detailed images is so wonderful. You have a very special talent for photography and writing! ~ Angela

NanE said...

Jodie, your pictures are stunning! I too love to explore the old cemeteries here in Charleston. So much history and so much mystery! Have a wonderful, safe Memorial Day!

TinyBear said...

those angels are so beautiful - I love the old look they have and your photos are beautiful too. I could spend hours on that cemetery too - so peaceful.
xo Tina

vintagesusie & wings said...

Hi Miss Jodie,
I LOVE cemetaries too & back east where you are, there are some amazing ones! Here in CA our tombstones don't date back as far as those by you, but there is something about a beautiful tombstone that touches my heart. Thinking of the family that had it made for their loved one, the sorrow they felt at the time it was made & hopefully the peace they felt in visiting it throughout the years. It's all so poignant!
Thanks for this lovely post Jodie & for remindiing me to remember on this special day. My maiden name is Brewer & I can't help but wonder if I just may be related to the Brewer in your photo.
Smiles & Hugs Friend...
Susie

Beth Leintz said...

Just beautiful- when you go back, please bring your camera and show us more.

Angela Weimer said...

Jodie, What beautiful pictures and writing. I love visiting old cemetries although I have to say since watchin DR Who over here I am a bit freaked out with Angel Statues but they are beautiful. Thanks for sharing. Angela

juanita said...

This was a beautiful post. Thank you so much for sharing.

Creative Carmelina said...

this post, full of the rich beauty, reminds me of my grade 12 art class...

how?
why? you're wondering!?

well, we were told to walk around town and find something, anything to draw for the afternoon.

and I ended up in a cemetary drawing sculptures and headstones.

spending time in a place like that really makes you think about the life you're living!
it was an afternoon I shall forever hold dear in my heart!

and yes, when I'm drawing or painting....i am completely at ease!

thanks for stopping in!



ciao bella
creative carmelina

Katsui Jewelry said...

Thank you, Jodie. That was so beautiful that I am moved to tears. I love angels...but those are the most real and lovely that I have ever seen...they have obviously seen a lot. I love how you wrote about the cemetery...it indeed does look like a beautiful, peaceful place!
Hugs,
Suz

Heidi Meyer said...

Your pics and words make me want to be transported there right now! Such beautiful pics and sentiments. It is interesting that you posted this today. Because, I found something for you today related to this that I think you will love. {and maybe a reason for a road trip - she says grinning from ear to ear} xoxoxo Heidi

Debby said...

Jodie, this is the most amazing place. I would love to wander through and see all the beauty that you have shared with us today. The stone angels are some of the most beautiful I have ever seen and the fencing, amazing. Thanks for sharing with us!

Pop by and see me, I have added more of my vintage goodies.
Hugs,
debby

The Feathered Nest said...

Oh Jodie, what a gorgeous place!!!!! So much beauty....I would have taken so many photos too ~ I loved visiting the Bonaventure Cemetery and taking photos of all of the amazing statuary...the patina of everything is so beautiful to me...thank you for sharing your visit with us, have a wonderful week sweetie!!! hugs and love, Dawn

Debra@Common Ground said...

Jodie dear, thank you for the MOST amazing tour. Such a beautiful place amidst the trees and markers. The angels are spectacular, but I am most taken with the gates to the individual family plots. Absolutely gorgeous!
Oh am I glad my dining room is put back together! That was one HUGE job!
xo,
Debra

Sares said...

What an amazing place. Cemeteries used to freak me out, but the older I get, the more peaceful I find them. This one would be so neat to go through. Your pictures of the angels are gorgeous too. I hope you have a terrific week Jodie, thanks for sharing this wonderful post!

Lori said...

what a beautiful cemetery Jodie...the angels and old wrought iron gates are just gorgeous...your photos are stunning...thanks for taking us along...

Linda Robinson said...

Your post just give me a peaceful and calm feeling, No wonder you love going there.. It makes me want to go and sit among the angels...

Your pictures are so Beautiful, thanks for sharing them with us.

~Linda

Karen said...

Very peaceful~ and yes, I could wander for hours.
:) Karen

T's Daily Treasures said...

Jodie, your photos are magnificent. Only YOU can make a cemetery seem so inviting! :) Best wishes, Tammy

Draffin Bears said...

Thank you dear Jodie, for taking us with you today, on your outing.
I loved seeing all the beauty here, especially the lovely angels.
Looks like a peaceful and lovely place.

Enjoy your week
Hugs
Carolyn

Our Porch in Hillsborough said...

What a beautiful churchyard and such lovely photos. My husband and I are putting this on our list of places to visit! Thanks for taking us along!
Cheers,
Leah

karlascottage.typepad.com said...

How beautiful!

Bayside Moments said...

Gorgeous post and thanks for sharing.
Pam

Julia - "Vintage with Laces" said...

What a wonderful and peaceful place, Jodie! The statues are simply amazing and I love all the pretty ironwork. Such detailed work with so many beautiful elements. The old trees are gorgeous as well. I can understand why you love this place.
Sleep well, dear friend!
Lots of hugs,
Julia

GWENDOLYN said...

Thanks for taking us along on this beautiful tour. It looks like a peacful and lovely place to walk. and I too would have taken many photos.
Blessings
Gwen

Secondhandrose said...

Jodie, thanks for visiting my blog. This beautiful cemetary took my breath away and took my thoughts away to my relatives buried in Alabama in a cemetary among the trees like this tho not so grand. But they do have the fences trimming out the little family groups. You must have had a grand time. I wish I could have joined you.

karen