~ I’M NOT SURE WHY, BUT ever since I found out about Mont St. Michael, I’ve loved it. Church.. plus town.. on a cool island-thingy mountain. It’s like the evil secret headquarters, except for good. Sad to say it’s currently a museum, ever since the French Devolution, but it’s still evocative.
Word has it that way back in the day, after the Legions retreated to defend Italy in the early 400s, that the island mount was a last-ditch fortress, a refuge in the surging tide of barbarian tribes released from Imperial control. Evidence is sketchy about how long it held out, but before long, a vision of Michael the Archangel led to the construction of a monastery on the site, and the pilgrimages began. The pilgrimages still continue, though many go to see history, a special place, a long-time site of human activity and intention.
Not sure if I’ll ever get there (along with the other great Mediaeval pilgrimage sites of Compostela, Rome, Mount Gargano, and the Holy Land), but it lives in my mind– and I hope, one day, a renewed order of monks will return there to pray (like these guys, maybe), to do good works, to remember Western Civilization, and to be the invisible spiritual glue that holds up and defends the church and western civilization.