Douai Abbey

Earlier in the month Douai received the newly-refurbished Pugin sedilia originally made for the church in Douai, France. Dating from the mid-nineteenth century, they had fallen into desuetude and disrepair after the post-conciliar re-ordering of the abbey church made them redundant. The Abbey seemstress, Sally Fish, has re-webbed and re-upholstered them, and a colleague of hers has repaired the areas of deterioration in the woodwork. They will now be permanently sited near the main altar, to be used at Sunday Mass and other big liturgical events. The monks will no longer have to lug the wooden chairs from the choir for this purpose.


Recently a dog attacked the monks poultry during Sunday Mass, killing one of the laying ducks. The abbot, who had just returned from Mass at Winchester, took some time to get the beast to release a chicken it had bitten. The owners of the dog professed to be oblivious to what their unleashed dog had been doing, and it is suspected that they have been coming regularly with their dog while the community is at Mass. People walking their dogs through the private grounds have long been a problem, especially when the community had sheep; some years ago a dog savaged several of the sheep.

The monks may well soon have to take firmer steps to avoid such issues, not least for the safety of the monks and their guests. For the time being it’s firmly requested that people do not bring their dogs to Douai Abbey for walks and romps in the grounds. The livestock need to be protected, not to mention the monks and their guests. The abbey grounds are not public but private property, which they are more than happy to share with those would like to enjoy them responsibly. This invitation, sadly, cannot be extended to dogs. Now if you would like to bring a dog to Douai you must contact the Bursar’s office beforehand. Should permission be given, the dog must be on a leash at all times.


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