Notre-Dame de l’Ile Barbe Chapel

2015 Grant of $15,000—Dallas, Northern California, Paris Chapters

The Ile Barbe is one of the most ancient historic sites in Lyon. An abbey was founded on the island in the 5th century, the first monastic establishment in the region and one of the oldest in Gaul. Charlemagne endowed it with a beautiful library. The monastery, pillaged several times, adopted the rule of Saint Benedict in the 9th century and gradually became very wealthy. The abbey held a privileged position for trade and commerce strategically located near three rivers. In 1562, the monastery was devastated and burned by Protestant troops. During the Revolution, everything was sold and dispersed. Some vestiges of 15th-century châteaux remain, which gives the island a feel of lost grandeur that attests it its illustrious past. Today, all that remains of the abbey is the Romanesque chapel built in the 11th and 12th centuries.

Restoration: Masonry, painted décor