View of Ars with the basilica
|Coordinates: 45°59′34″N 4°49′25″E / 45.9928°N 4.8236°ECoordinates: 45°59′34″N 4°49′25″E / 45.9928°N 4.8236°E|
|• Mayor (2014–2020)||Richard Paccaud|
|Area1||5.5 km2 (2.1 sq mi)|
|• Density||240/km2 (620/sq mi)|
|Time zone||CET (UTC+1)|
|• Summer (DST)||CEST (UTC+2)|
|INSEE/Postal code||01021 / 01480|
226–281 m (741–922 ft) |
(avg. 240 m or 790 ft)
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km² (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.2 Population without double counting: residents of multiple communes (e.g., students and military personnel) only counted once.
The village is in the south-western part of the Ain department 33 km north of Lyon and 10 km east of Villefranche-sur-Saône in the heart of the Dombes region - known for its many lagoons. Ars-sur-Formans is on the Dombes plateau while to the west it borders the fertile hills of the Val de Saône. A small river, the Formans, passes through the commune.
The D44 road from Savigneux west to Beauregard forms much of the northern border of the commune. Access to the village is by road D904 going west from Savigneux and continuing to join the D934 west of the commune. The road D888 also runs south-east of the village to Rancé.
The name of the commune comes from Arsa meaning "burnt". Long known simply as Ars, the commune changed its name to Ars-sur-Formans by a decree of 12 October 1956 published in the Official Journal on the 18th of the same month.
Neighbouring communes and villages
The name Ars appeared as early as the year 969. In the 11th century Ars was one of the many strongholds of the Lordship of Villars and his mansion was located next to the church. In 1226 Jean of Ars sold his land to the monastery of Île Barbe but Villars retained sovereignty. In the 14th century, the protection of the castle was divided between the Lord of Villars and that of Beaujeu.
The village was burned by the troops of Viry in 1409 and was obliged to submit to the consequences of the Wars of Religion throughout the following century.
Since the mid-19th century, the name of Ars was universally associated with its holy parish-priest, Saint Jean-Marie Vianney. Well before his canonisation by Pope Pius XI in 1925 there were many pilgrimages. On 6 October 1986, Pope John Paul II travelled to the village of Ars-sur-Formans, during his third visit to France.
Paly of six Or and Azure.
|1838||1879||Claude Prosper Garnier des Garets|
|1904||1912||André Benoît Trève|
|1912||1915||Jean-François Cinier Trève|
|1919||1944||Jean-François Cinier Trève|
|1945||1947||Antoine Mandy Demole|
(Not all data is known)
Ars-sur-Formans has twinning associations with:
- Freihalden (Germany) since 1977.
In 2009 the commune had 1,326 inhabitants. The evolution of the number of inhabitants is known through the population censuses conducted in the commune since 1793. From the 21st century, a census of municipalities with fewer than 10,000 inhabitants is held every five years, unlike larger towns that have a sample survey every year.
Culture and heritage
The commune has many sites that are registered as historical monuments:
- The Park on the Chemin de Chateau
- The Girls' School and Orphanage of Providence (1827)
- A House at Rue des Ecoles (19th century)
- A School at Rue des Ecoles (1906)
- A House at Rue Jean-Marie Vianney (19th century)
- The Town Hall / School at Rue Jean-Marie Vianney (1840)
- The Sainte-Philomène Garden at Rue Jean-Marie Vianney
- The Chateau des Garets Park
- The Sainte-Anne Farmhouse at Champ du Chateau (19th century)
The commune has several religious buildings and structures that are registered as historical monuments:
- The Croix des Combes (Combes Cross) (1853)
- The Monumental Cross of the 1847 Jubilee (1847)
- The Croix Micholet (Micholet Cross) (1612)
- The Croix Tonneau (Tonneau Cross) (18th century)
- The Presbytery for the Priest of Ars (18th century)
- The former Church and Basilica (12th century)
- The Garnier des Garets family Tomb (1856)
- The Presbytery (1886)
- The Presbytery of Saint Curé d'Ars (18th century) The Presbytery and the chapel containing the relic of the heart of Saint Curé are now a museum and open to visitors. The reception desk and the spiritual activities of the sanctuary are organised by the priests of the sanctuary: the congregation of Benedictine nuns called the Tyburn Nuns and the Brothers of the Holy Family of Belley. The year 2009 marked the Jubilee of the 150th anniversary of the death of Saint Jean-Marie Vianney. On the occasion of the sacred international year for priests 2009-2010 the sanctuary hosted nearly 600,000 pilgrims including 35,000 priests. The Historial du Saint-Curé-d'Ars revives the decor of the period and reconstitutes in 17 scenes and 35 wax figures the history of the Curé of Ars. Ars is part of the Association of sanctuaries in France, and holds the title "tourist village of Ain".
- The Parish Church of Saint-Sixte (11th century) The Basilica of Ars, partly built in 1862 by the Lyon architect Pierre Bossan and his successor Sainte-Marie-Perrin, forms an extension to the old church. It houses the remains of Saint Jean-Marie Vianney, the parish-priest of Ars and the patron saint of all parish priests. This place of pilgrimage hosts more than 500,000 people each year.
- The Tomb of the heart of Jean-Marie Vianney (1932)
The commune has a very large number of religious items that are registered as historical objects. For a complete list with descriptions (in French) click here.
- Basilica of Ars Gallery
Cross at the entrance to the Basilica
View of the Basilica from 1900
The dome of the Basilica
East side of the Basilica
Plaque on the wall of the Basilica
Plaque on the Basilica
Stained glass in the Basilica
Stained glass in the Basilica
Tomb of Jean-Paul Vianney
- Presbytery of the Curé of Ars Gallery
Plaque from Pope Benedict XVI
Access to the garden of the presbytery
Old wagon in the presbytery
Statue of the priest behind the presbytery
- The Chapel du Coeur Gallery
The Chapel du Coeur
The Chapel du Coeur entrance
Interior of the Chapel du Coeur
- There are several communities present in Ars: the Working Missionary Sisters (Providence House), the Franciscan Sisters (Saint-Jean House), the Carmelite Sisters, the Benedictines of the Sacred Heart of Montmartre, the Brothers of the Holy Family of Belley (Guardians of the Sanctuary), the priests of the Jean-Marie Vianney Society (John Paul II Sacred Hall for the reception of priests and for International Seminar for the training of priests).
Entrance to the underground Notre-Dame-de-la-Miséricorde
Staircase to the underground Notre-Dame-de-la-Miséricorde
- On the second Sunday in February: Feast of the arrival of the Saint (evocation of the arrival of the Saint at the Meeting Monument, procession, solemn Mass, adoration of the blessed Sacrement, vespers with catechism)
- the Sunday following Easter Sunday: Divine Mercy Sunday (Mass, education, Solemn Vespers ...
- Every Wednesday in June: Groups of children at home (visit, Mass, games)
- in June, Mass and Procession of the festival of God in the village;
- 4 August (anniversary of the death of the Saint): Festival of the Saint Curé (Lauds, Solemn Mass, Procession, Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, Vespers, spiritual concert
- 8 December: Festival of the Immaculate Conception, lighting the village and entertainments
- Event at the Carmel of Saint Curé of Ars founded in 1939
- In 1986 and 2007 the movie-art-recreation association made two films about Carmel of the Holy Curé of Ars in the movie series "Relief of France: the monasteries" and a paper on John Paul II during his meeting with the Carmelites on 6 October 1986.
Notable people linked to the commune
- The commune is the homeland of Saint Curé of Ars - Jean-Marie Vianney.
- Ars-sur-Formans Tourist Office (French)
- Ars-sur-Formans Basilica (16 images) (French)
- Ars-sur-Formans on Lion1906
- Ars-sur-Formans on Google Maps
- Ars-sur-Formans on Géoportail, National Geographic Institute (IGN) website (French)
- Ars on the 1750 Cassini Map
- Ars-sur-Formans on the INSEE website (French)
- INSEE (French)
Notes and references
- At the beginning of the 21st century, the methods of identification have been modified by law No. 2002-276 of 27 February 2002 , the so-called "law of local democracy" and in particular Title V "census operations" which allow, after a transitional period running from 2004 to 2008, the annual publication of the legal population of the different French administrative districts. For municipalities with a population greater than 10,000 inhabitants, a sample survey is conducted annually, the entire territory of these municipalities is taken into account at the end of the period of five years. The first "legal population" after 1999 under this new law came into force on 1 January 2009 and was based on the census of 2006.
- Inhabitants of Ain (French)
- Google Maps
- An interesting article was published on the name of the commune in 2010 in the Dombes magazine No. 31 published by the Academy of Dombes. (French)
- List of Mayors of France (French)
- National Commission for Decentralised cooperation (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000328 Park (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000182 Girls' School and Orphanage of Providence (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000193 House at Rue des Ecoles (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000185 School at Rue des Ecoles (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000196 House at Rue Jean-Marie Vianney (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000184 Town Hall / School at Rue Jean-Marie Vianney (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000329 Sainte-Philomène Garden (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000330 Chateau des Garets Park (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000199 Sainte-Anne Farmhouse at Champ du Chateau (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000299 Croix des Combes (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000302 Monumental Cross of the 1847 Jubilee (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Palissy IM01000914 Statue: (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000297 Croix Micholet (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000298 Croix Tonneau (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée PA00116295 Presbytery for the Priest of Ars (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée PA00116294 Church and Basilica (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000286 Garnier des Garets family Tomb (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000179 Presbytery (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000178 Presbytery of Saint Curé d'Ars (French)
- Museum of Ars (French)
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000171 Parish Church of Saint-Sixte (French)
- 525,000 visitors at Ars-sur-Formans: the consecration of religious tourism, consulted on 23 May 2011, author Marc Dazy (French).
- Ministry of Culture, Mérimée IA01000177 Tomb of the heart of Jean-Marie Vianney (French)
- This archived document is visible in the video: Dialogue at Carmel of Saint Curé of Ars on cine-art-loisir.com by Jean Claude Guerguy, Director (French)
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