La Maison de Larmenier (The House of Larmenier)
This room takes the visitor through the family history and early life of Mother St. Basil (Victoire Larmenier), her arrival in London and the founding of the Congregation of the Sisters of Nazareth. Its many displays clearly show the development and spread of the Congregation as well as the history of Catholicism in England following the Reformation. It is not just ‘our’ story, but envelopes the evolving story of Catholic institutions in the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham which became known as ‘The Pope’s Corner’. It also witnesses to the strong links between the Sisters, the Archdiocese of Westminster and the Holy See.
The Archive Gallery
On display in the Gallery are historically significant portraits, paintings, and photographs, each with a story of its own, some incredibly interesting. It is a walk-through history, much of which is that of the Congregation and its expansion. Many of the portraits and paintings are of personages who had a connection with the early Congregation.
Father Claude Bernin Room
This room is a treasure trove of artefacts that have deep spiritual meaning and value to the Sisters. Many relics are displayed here, a number of which are not hundreds but over a thousand years old. Included in the display is something representing eleven Popes, four of which are now recognised Saints within the Church. One such item is the nib with ivory handle used by Saint Pope Pius X as well as items of clothing from a number of Popes and Cardinals. This room and its artefacts have many a story to tell.
The Archive Room is purpose-built, and temperature regulated to ensure the protection and secure housing of documents and other artefacts. It holds letters and documents from as early as 1851 when the Sisters first came from France. History keeps evolving each new day and so the contents continually grow as more is added to as today’s documents become tomorrow’s history.
Gardens of remembrance, peace and growth surround the building.
This is not just one story, but a wealth of stories within the story. It is hoped that all those who visit will see, learn and be inspired by the journey that these stories lead you on.
This story does not start with Victoire Larmenier. It starts with God who inspired this young woman to give up all to follow Him along the path He set for her. Her charism, vision, mission and values are His as he planted them within her and gave her the holiness, courage, strength, humility and integrity to walk the direction He would lead her on. The charism, vision, mission and values live today in those who continue to follow her.
We welcome enquiries about visiting the Heritage Centre. In the first instance please email using the email firstname.lastname@example.org Visits are by conducted tours which are usually arranged for Wednesday afternoons, but we try to be flexible.
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