The Father Damien Museum In Tremelo

Father Damien of Molokai Is one of the most influential Belgians of all time. He was born on January 3, 1840 as Jozef De Veuster in the small community of Ninde, near the town of Tremelo in Belgium. Later he became better known as Father Damien, a father of the Congregation of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Mary (also called "Picpuspaters") for whom he was a missionary. He became world famous for his work and care for leprosy patients. He died on the island of Molokai on April 15, 1889. Later Father Damien became the patron saint for lepers and AIDS patients. His feast day is celebrated on May 10th.

Picture courtesy of the Damiaan Museum
Today, his birth house is the setting for the Damiaan Museum. His family house was thoroughly renovated and expanded into an interactive and contemporary experience center that not only focuses on the past but also reflects on the current situation and the social significance of Damien's figure and his legacy. The new Damian Museum focuses on accessibility, multilingualism and experiential focus. The new experience center wants to inform, inspire, sensitize and engage.


Picture courtesy of the Damiaan Museum  
The Damiaan Museum is divided into six different zones for the visitor. Via objects, sound recordings and visual material you step into the life story of Father Damien. You literally get the feeling you can write his story yourself, alongside authentic Damien objects, such as his own carved altar and numerous personal items and pictures.

In the museum you can also admire some paintings by Edward Clifford These works of art are on the Flemish Top-list of paintings.

You can find more information and  details about the museum on it's official website: http://damiaanmuseum.be/en/

You can find the museum at this address: Pater Damiaanstraat 37, Tremelo, Belgium.



The Jacques Brel Statue in Brussels


The City of Brussels has erected a statue of it's most famous singer Jacques Brel. It found its home on the "Place de la Vieille Halle aux Blés". His Statue is made at the request of the trade association on the square, which is already the home of the Jacques Brel Foundation. The bronze statue is made by artist Tom Frantzen and is titled L'Envol or "The Flight" It a shows a singing Brel behind his microphone with his arms wide open, something he always did at his very expressive life performances.

Picture by Pixabay

The statue is placed on the corner of the triangular square and is oriented towards the descending Eikstraat, where another famous inhabitant of Brussels is located, Manneken Pis. "Jacques Brel seems to welcome you with open arms when you come from below", says artist Tom Frantzen". When you get close, it seems like you are attending a concert by him, because he is standing on a small elevation, and it looks as if Brel rises up into the air, which symbolizes the feeling of freedom he stood for and it gives the statue its dedicated name.

You can find the statue at this address: Rue du Chêne, Eikstraat, Brussels.

The monastery Church of the Clarians in Brussels


The monastery order clarions originally had their convent near the Halle Gate, where they settled in 1343 at the invitation of a generous lender. This monastery was demolished in 1578 to expand the city walls and the sisters settled here, in the monastery of Nazareth, the former property of the "Frères de la vie commune". In the 17th century, they decided to expand and renovate their monastery, as well as to built a new church. Construction commenced in 1665, according to plans by the architect Luc Fayd'herbe (1617-1697).

Picture by Pixabay

Thirty years later, the building is the victim of the bombardment of the city by the French army and must be rebuilt. The rebuild was stopped during the French occupation who added two new streets crossing on the grounds of the monastery, the Rijke Klarenstraat, and the Sint-Kristoffelstraat.

The church is reopened, enlarged and got its religious function back in 1806, this time as a parish church. During the battles of September 1830, the church served as a hospital for the wounded. On 15 June 1989 the church was the victim of a heavy fire, and since then it has been painstakingly restored. Among other things, the organs are definitely lost. At the same time, excavations were carried out that exposed remains of the old monastery.

You can find the church at this address: Rijkeklarenstraat 23, Brussels.