The astonishing Pyrenean Way of the Cross

In May 1854, the Town Council authorized the parish priest of Nestier to build a Way of the Cross on the hillside.

The villagers gathered together thus began the construction of the Calvary of Mont-Arès. At first, the Calvary will have 11 small chapels and a small grotto at the foot of the hill. The first 4 chapels will house terracotta figures representing scenes from the Passion of Christ, while the small grotto is dedicated to the Nativity. The 7 other chapels will house the paintings of the Way of the Cross.

A century later, in 1954, the villagers, once again gathered together, undertook the restoration of the site. The work will last about ten years.

The paintings presented were created by Marie-Claude Giles, a native of Nestier.

For Marie-Claude Giles, this activity was above all a spiritual approach and a personal commitment, honouring the memory of her father who, very attached to Nestier, had developed a project that fascinated him: that each chapel should house a painting representing a scene from the life of Christ. He had thus listed all the chapels on Calvary according to precise themes: the hidden life of Jesus, public life, death, the Resurrection. Marie-Claude therefore proposed, within the framework of the activities of the association "Les amis de Nestier et du vallon de Bouchère" to take over and carry out the project imagined by her father.

The complex, long plundered and abandoned for a long time, has just come to the end of its restoration.
A small open-air theatre has been installed at the foot of the hill.
Shows are given there on sunny days.

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