Long, long ago I had a dear Catholic nun for a friend and a journal mentor. She was the late Sister Mary Patricia Sexton, CSJ. She lived at Carondolet Center at Mt. St. Mary's in Los Angeles when I went for journal workshops given by Dr. Ira Progoff of Dialogue House. She loved to tell the story of giving Dr. Progoff, who was Jewish, his own prayer kneeler and she called it a prie dieu. He cherished it. There were many beautiful prie dieus in Carondolet Center as well as at most retreat centers I've frequented over the years. I've always wanted one for home, but assumed they were too expensive to own personally and simply dismissed the thought as frivolous.
This is the prie dieu in the chapel of Christ Episcopal Church where I worship now. It is so beautiful and when we had the Redondo Beach Home and Architectural Tour last weekend, I photographed all our beautiful, but modest treasures to include "in the cloud" with a lot of other historical material I have been gathering. We are celebrating our 120th anniversary this year.
For some reason, I actually did a brief Google search tonight for a vintage prie dieu and was amazed to find there are many available though most are way beyond my price range. I'm envisioning one sitting at a garage or estate sale someday since I do frequent them to buy "junque" for my mixed media collages. If I were so lucky to find one, I'd sand it down, antique it, and then embroider a beautiful kneeler cushion. I have found that sometimes when I set an intention to trip across something in my journeys, I actually do.
So, for the few people who read here, do you have an old prie dieu buried in your attic or garage you'd like to sell so I can recycle it and give it a new life? In the meantime, I'll keep haunting eBay, Etsy and some of the antique dealers online.