Saint-Eustache church produces its own fragrance

Yves Trocheris, parish priest of Saint-Eustache, “the cathedral of Les Halles” as we still call the one that was, of the XVIe in the XVIIIe century, the largest parish church in Paris, with its 105 meters long and 43.5 meters wide, before being dethroned by Saint-Sulpice (110 m by 57 m), admits to being “Particularly sensitive to odors”. And especially those of candles, incense and flowers, which fully participate in the liturgy. ” It is magic ! “, he blurted out.

The affable fifty-something even confesses that a good part of his life is linked to the olfactory. “As a child, every morning my grandmother would ask me to choose her perfume for the day. “ As a teenager, she gave him her first bottle. “It was Cuir de Russie from Chanel. It’s my Proust madeleine… I like a person to smell good. ” With that he quotes an excerpt from Saint Paul’s second epistle to the Corinthians. “We are indeed for God the good odor of Christ and it is this good odor that we are responsible for spreading. “

As if that were not enough, he evokes Mary of Bethany, who had poured a spikenard, “Pure and very precious”, on Jesus’ feet which she then wiped with her hair. “She wanted to give the best gift to Christ. The perfume is an offering. ” No wonder then that his parish initiated the creation of an original perfume, a world first for a church.

Open-mindedness

The genesis of this fragrance is the fruit of encounters and friendships. Louis Robiche, general manager of the place, shares with Etienne de Swardt, creator and publisher of perfumes, manager of a small business, La Seconde Affaire du Pommier, the same passion for observing nature, a hobby they practice regularly by surveying the Vendômois. During conversations, the idea of ​​a perfume for Saint-Eustache was born. They talk to Father Trocheris who immediately tells them about his sensitivity to fragrances.

Arrived in September 2018 from Frankfurt, where he ministered in German for six years, the latter is an Oratorian. His congregation is distinguished by its open-mindedness – “We are priests of the city, spiritual humanists” – and by his sensitivity to art in all its forms. In Saint-Eustache, whose pastoral activity has been provided by oratorians since 1922, The pilgrims of Emmaus, a painting by Rubens, coexists with The Life of Christ, a triptych by graffiti artist Keith Haring, who died of HIV infection in the 1980s.

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