Not all this section has been translated into English, but you will find an English-language summary below. And don’t forget to scan the French-language pages, which are headed “Bâtiment 2014”, “Mobilier 2014” and “Rénovation 2015”.These pages are full or photos and videos showing how much work has already been done.
A.T.M. (Association Les Amis du Temple Mottassin) is a cultural association in La Motte d’ Aigues. It is responsible for renewing the fabric of the Protestant Church. After two years of concentrated action, the village authorities agreed to take on the rebuilding and consolidation work inside the church. This site gives a description of the work to be done, and details the renovations which have been made (virtually complete for June 2015).
As a cultural association, we – in A.T.M – feel that the church is an outstanding religious monument in the village, since it bears witness to our Waldensian and Protestant past.
The present building, which dates from 1905 , is in fact the third church to be built on the site. Of the two previous churches, the ﬁrst was razed to the ground in 1663 by order of the French Crown, and the second fell into disrepair in the 19th century, just a few years after being built. Its Protestant past has marked the village over several hundred years: and this is why we must maintain this historic building in good repair and hand it on to the next generations. It is a signiﬁcant part of our heritage.
The international aspect
After the Edict of Nantes had been repealed by King Louis XIV in 1685, several Protestant families from the Aigues valley region went into voluntary exile in Switzerland, Germany, Holland and South Africa. .. and settled there. Their descendants are regular visitors to the village today; they come looking for information about their ancestors, and discover with unfeigned emotion the land of their forebears. It was therefore our duty to preserve the Protestant church as a reminder of their ancestors’ faith and of the reasons for their exile. Simply stated, the Protestant church in La Motte d’Aigues recalls their French roots and their family history, and brings them closer to us.
In 1998, the building was partially restored by the village authorities, but has fallen into a sad state of disrepair since then. The renovation work that has been completed in 2015 has brought the building up to modern standards:
- Toilets with wash-basins,
- Air source heat-pump,
- Better insulation (new double-glazed windows, rock-wool cladding between ceiling and roof, and in wall cavities),
- New electrical circuits.
In 1905, French law imposed new norms separating the Church from the State. Church building costs were henceforward to be borne by local communities, whereas the costs of work inside the building are borne entirely by the local parishioners ie. in our case by the local Protestant faithful. This is why A.T.M. has also been active in helping the parish to raise funds to change the seating inside the church. We bought 100 chairs in 2016 to replace the benches which were in a poor state of repair.
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