Page:Englishmen in the French Revolution.djvu/320
Narrative of the English Benedictine Nuns, Rue de
(From a MS. at Stoneyhurst College. See page 160.)
The community of Benedictines, established in the Rue de Champ de l'Alouette, in Paris, in the year 1652, remained under the protection of Divine Providence in the regular observance of their rules and constitutions, until the year 1792; in which year their convent, as well as all other religious establishments in France, were put "en arrestation," by reason of the Revolution, which began in the year 1788.
From this year until 1792 the community continued in alarm on this account, and at the same time were afflicted with much sickness among themselves. Their worthy superior, Mrs. Bond, was taken ill of her last sickness, which deprived the community of her at the beginning of their troubles; also in the same year died three choir religious, and in the beginning of the following year two lay sisters. At the end of this same year died also our most worthy friend and respected superior, who acted for the communities under the Archbishop. In this moment of distress at the death of our dear and lamented Mother Prioress the nuns were greatly terrified by a report that the people in the "Quartiers" intended to take up the body as soon as they could. The religious sent to the "Section" to beg that guards should be sent, and they were so. They patrolled the gardens in the night, and the nuns watched within. But nevertheless they found the only way to secure it was to open the grave and transport the body into another which they had made for that purpose during the night. It