The annual holy pilgrimage of the "Sainted Maries de la Mer" took place in the tiny French village of the same name, May 25, and commemorated the landing there of Saint Marie Jacob and Saint Marie Salome.
GV. Of village.
CU. Sign "Saintes Maries de la Mer."
LV. Church bells ringing.
SV. Women touching statues of women saints.
CU. Little girl kissing one of the statues.
LV.PAN. Down from church to procession leaving.
CU. Onlooker with child.
SV. Horsemen riding alongside statues in procession.
GV. Procession through street.
STV. Statues carried in procession.
CU. Archbishop of Arles in procession, blessing.
TOP, V.PAN. Up procession arrives on beach.
SV.PAN. Women in national costumes.
PAN UP Showing Gypsies gathering around in sea.
SV. Archbishop of Arles blessing, PAN to statue.
CU. Archbishop blessing.
LV. Horsemen through sea onto beach leaving.\
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: The annual holy pilgrimage of the "Sainted Maries de la Mer" took place in the tiny French village of the same name, May 25, and commemorated the landing there of Saint Marie Jacob and Saint Marie Salome. According to tradition they came originally from the Middle East to the coast of Provence to help the poor gypsy people of the region.
Gypsies from all regions of France and many European countries, as well as the Archbishop and clergy from the nearby town of Arles, took part in the procession which wended its way from the Church of Saintes Maries to the part of the beach where the two holy Maries are said to have landed. Statues of the two holy women were carried into the sea where they were blessed by Monseigneur de Province heres, Archbishop of Arles. Gypsies and "guardians" bull-herdsmen from the marshy plainlands of the Camargue -crowded into the sea to participate in this holy ceremony.
Blessing of the sea, the crowd and the two holy women was carried out twice by the Archbishop - the second time holding in his hand the relics of the saints.