St. Etienne du Mont

I used very often, when coming home from my morning's work at one of the public institutions of Paris, to stop in at the dear old church of St. Etienne du Mont. The tomb of St. Genevieve, surrounded by burning candles and votive tablets, was there; there was a noble organ with carved figures; and there was a marvellous staircase like a coil of lace. These things I mention from memory, but not all of them together impressed me so much as an inscription on a small slab of marble fixed in one of the walls. It told how this church of St. Steven was repaired and beautified in the year 1673, and how during the celebration of its reopening, two girls of the parish (filles de la paroisse) fell from the gallery, carrying a part of the balustrade with them, to the pavement, but by a miracle escaped injury. 

Oliver Wendell Holmes, The Autocrat of the Breakfast Table

 

Many of my students have asked me about St. Etienne du Mont. Some have been to Paris and visited Holmes's "dear old church." For those who have not, here is a picture of St. Etienne taken before an early morning Christmas Mass in 2008. The interior today is pretty much as OWH described it in 1858.

 

 

Others have asked if there is a version of the Mass available in French. Here is a PDF file from the standard Missel de Dimanche used in France:

La Messe en francais