The St. Antthony Hermitage, Bouchette Lake, Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean, Quebec, Canada

The St. Anthony hermitage of  Bouchette Lake was founded by Father Elzéar Delamarre in 1907 with the construction of a second home and a chapel dedicated to St Anthony of Padua. The place became a pilgrimage site and the abbot was building a larger chapel to accommodate the visitors. In 1925 the site was taken in care by the Capuchin Minor Brothers who built a monastery and a church dedicated to the Virgin. Today the place has also a hotel with a large dining-room with terrace overlooking the lake and an excellent gastronomic choice with local products and typical menu of the Lac St-Jean region as the famous pie called ‘tourtière’. There is also a wooden observation tower, a pedestrian path, a souvenir shop, a bakery, a camping area with parking for trailers and the warm welcome of the Brothers and staff who make of this place a beautiful option for a relaxing holiday, solo, with family, friends or couples. To see: the St. Anthony of Padua chapel (neo-Gothic country), the frescoes of the Quebec painter Charles Huot, the monastery (neo-Romanesque), the Marian Chapel, among others and of course the natural environment that is really beautiful!

Tips

You can book your accommodation with or without breakfast but it is good to take it even as the supper cause the site is in nature and there are no restaurants very near.

You have a small beach nearby, on the way to the village, and there are some games for children on the site next to the lake.

Taste the bread and buns baked at the bakery on site, it’s worth it.

There are many activities around Lac St-Jean; so staying at the monastery would be economical and comfortable to come and visit the area.

The Wailing Wall, Jerusalem, Israel

The Wailing Wall, or Western Wall or HaKotel and El-Burak, is a retaining wall of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem located in the Jewish quarter of the old city dating from I century BC and since the seventh century, it incorporates the walls of the Temple Mount, very close to the Holy of Holies (located on the Temple Mount) so that the Jews consider the holiest place for prayer. The pan (57 m long) is just a part of the western wall (497 m long). The rest of the wall is used as a fourth wall by the adjoining houses in the Arab neighborhood; the rest is underground. The Wailing Wall is an Israeli national symbol as well as a Muslim one because it supports the esplanade where are built the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa Mosque (the third holiest place in Islam). You enter the square in front of the wall with a door wall, the door Mughrabi or Garbage, where police has strict controls. The esplanade has 3 parts; one that is open to the public, the other two, separated by a partition, are for people who want to approach the wall, one for men and one for women. There are holy arches in underground rooms that line the men’s section where we find the Torah scrolls that are used during prayer services that take place throughout the day.

Tips

If you want to approach the wall, or put small pieces of paper with wishes or prayers in the cracks and crevices, either to pray or put your hand on the wall, you must enter the section that suits you by walking on your front to the wall and to leave the place, walking slowly backwards because you can not give your back to the wall.

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