Lost Tomb of the Knights Templar by Ben Hammott
Coustaussa church lies across the valley from Rennes-le-Chateau and during Sauniere's time the priest was the Abbé Gélis.
Gélis was a friend of Sauniere's who was brutally murdered and the assassins were never caught. I will cover this murder in a separate article to be posted at a later date.
Coustaussa Church entrance. The date above the door is 1660
Coustaussa Church date 1660
Coustaussa Church interior looking towards the altar
Old painting hanging on the wall behind the altar. It is in a bad state of decay.
Painting of Mary to the right of the altar
Station of the cross 9
Station of the Cross 14
Stained glass window
Keen to see if we could get into the presbytery where the Abbé Gélis lived and was later murdered to take some photographs of the scene of the crime, we were told by a local man living in the village that it no longer existed. It was pulled down some years ago and though there is a house called 'The Presbytery, on the same site, and now a gite you can rent, this is a newer building.
The rendered building on the right is the house that has now replaced the old presbytery
The old presbytery would probably have looked like one of these buildings in the village
|Ben Hammott's Illustrated Guide to Rennes-le-Chateau No1||Lost Tomb of the Knights Templar||Beginnings by Ben Hammott Available 2010||
by Ben Hammott
33 Postcards ofl’Abbé Saunière and Complete set of Bérenger Saunière's 33 Rennes-le-Château Postcards