Sunday, May 1, 2016

Closing of the Octave of Our Lady of Luxembourg

Photo: Lex Kleren / Luxemburger Wort /
This year's Octave celebration is a very special one as 2016 marks the 350th anniversary of the Consolatrix afflictorum (Comforter of the Afflicted, one of the titles of Our Lady from the Litany of Loreto) becoming the patroness of the city of Luxembourg. Unfortunately, this year saw a rather low turnout of members of the Grand Ducal Family who joined in the annual closing procession taking place on the fifth Sunday after Easter. (Note 1: There also was a mass this morning attended by the Grand Duke and Grand Duchess. Note 2: For more on the history of the Octave of Our Lady of Luxembourg, have a look at this Luxarazzi 101.)

However, of course we could count on our regular Luxembourg players to make the closing procession a priority: Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria Teresa were accompanied by Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume and Hereditary Grand Duchess Stéphanie for the event. The Grand Duchess wore the same outfit as this morning (and thus giving us an explanation for the dresscode upgrade) and the Hereditary Grand Duchess went for a coat previously worn by herself, Grand Duchess Maria Teresa and Princess Alexandra. (Quick note to the grand ducal ladies: It would be much appreciated if we could see another piece of clothing repeated in the near future, we already have two new examples of your royal recycling love - and we need a third one to publish our post. Much obliged.)

Photo: RTL /
On to the important things: The procession led the family and the other pilgrims from the Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Luxembourg via the rue Notre-Dame, the rue Philippe II, the avenue de la Porte-Neuve, the rue Beaumont, the rue des Capucins, the Grand-rue, the rue du Marché-aux-Herbes, the rue de l'Eau back to the Cathédrale. As this year was a special Octave celebrations which marks the aforementioned 350th anniversary, the Pope was represented by a papal legate, Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki, Archbishop of Cologne. He and Luxembourgish Archbishop Jean-Claude Hollerich were joined by Apostolic Nuncio in Luxembourg, Giacinto Berloco, as well as the (Arch-)Bishops of Strasbourg, Cashel & Emly, Banja Luka, Aachen and Bucharest.

After the end of the procession and the final blessing at the Cathédrale, the members of the Grand Ducal Family made their way back to the palais by foot for their formerly only Balcony appearance of the year. (They did one at national day last year, too) The award for most avid waver (as in person who waves the most) this year - as in basically all years - goes to Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume. Maybe he can use that ability to signal some photographers to take pictures of him and his wife during their upcoming travels to China. That'd be much appreciated!

But before we had to the next trade mission, here are a few handy picture links with visuals of the day: Wort and RTL. In addition there is a video at RTL.

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