Tag Archives: Juno Beach

Patriarchal and Lorraine Crosses

The Patriarchal cross and the Cross of Lorraine are so similar that the names have become interchangeable.
This unique cross has one vertical post and two horizontal arms. The top arm is shorter than the lower arm.

Juno Beach memorial, France
Juno Beach memorial, France
Free French Memorial, Lyle Hill, Inverclyde, Scotland
Free French Memorial, Lyle Hill, Inverclyde, Scotland http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/417332

As a naval memorial this cross is combined with an anchor. The inscription on the anchor states:
This Monument Is Dedicated To The Memory Of
The Sailors Of The Free French Naval Forces
Who Sailed From Greenock In The Years 1940-1945
And Gave Their Lives In The Battle Of The Atlantic
For The Liberation Of France
And The Success Of The Allied Cause.

Very popular in France this cross has two crossbars, which technically should be placed one above and one below the midpoint.

Variations of this cross show the crossbars the same length or with the lower crossbar being longer.
A massive cross of Lorraine stands at Colombey-les-Deux-Eglises in France as a memorial to General Charles de Gaulle.

Charles de Gaulle memorial
Charles de Gaulle memorial

The Cross of Lorraine was the symbol of the French Resistance group, F.F.I. as seen in the photo below. The grave is located at  the Natzweiler_Struthof Concentration Camp.

Source: http://www.scrapbookpages.com/Natzweiler/Tour/AshPit.html

A Russian version of this cross contains a short, slanted crosspiece near the foot of the vertical post.

ccl sarang

Source: http://www.pravmir.com/patriarch-kirills-ministry-photographs/

The Papal Cross resembles the Patriarchal Cross, but with a third horizontal bar. This cross is used only in processions that involve the Roman Catholic Pope.
papal cross

Latin Cross

There are many forms and types of crosses used in cemeteries and on gravestones. The most common form and basic design is the LATIN CROSS (†). One of the oldest symbols of Christianity it symbolizes Christ’s sacrifice, and is an emblem of faith; salvation; and a symbol of rebirth.

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There are also many other types of crosses that are comprised of the basic Latin cross. The CALVARY CROSS is a Latin cross mounted on three steps to resemble Mt. Golgotha where Christ was crucified. Each step represents love, hope and faith.

stepped    calvary

A CROSSLET is comprised of four Latin crosses joined in the centre. It symbolizes the spread of Christianity to the four corners of the earth.



The LORRAINE cross is popular in France. It is associated with the Knights Templar and the crusades.


Panoramio_Juno beach

A Latin cross resting on a banded orb is known as the CROSS OF TRIUMPH or the cross of victory representing  the triumph of the Gospel throughout the world.

cross orb


Following the Fallen

We are in Normandy, France, to search for the grave of Albert Chenier, a Canadian soldier who gave his life in support of freedom. We know he died here, but little else.

We visit the Juno Beach Centre at Courseulles-Sur-Mer (a museum commemorating the Canadian liberation forces efforts, and a memorial to their lives.) We explain to the Guide that we have been searching the names on the memorial in the grounds for Albert Chenier who was injured upon landing and died several weeks later. He informs us that the names on the monuments are sponsored, and they do not represent all the Canadians who died there. He offers to search the website and returns within a few minutes with Albert’s regimental number and the cemetery in which he is interred, only a few minutes from this location: Beny-Sur-Mer Canadian War Cemetery, Calvados, France.

The cemetery was created as a permanent resting place for Canadian soldiers who had been temporarily interred in smaller plots close to where they fell during World War II. It contains the remains of 9 sets of brothers, a record for a Second World War cemetery. There is also a special memorial erected to a soldier of the Canadian Infantry Corps who is known to have been buried in this cemetery, but the exact site of whose grave has not been located.

We leave behind Juno Beach, the giant crucifix that towers over the area offering both redemption and caution ‘lest we forget’; the remnants of the Atlantic Wall, the German bunkers and tunnels, and the many monuments to Canadian war heroes: one of which denotes the D-Day Officer’s order of the day:

‘When the ramp goes down get out fast. Go like a bat out of hell, get in close and take cover…
Don’t stop to help the wounded even if he is your buddy, the medics will take care of them…’


Juno Beach

We follow directions to a large cemetery located in the middle of the open countryside where fine hedges decorate the entrance. The flanking registry buildings have platforms from which visitors can see the whole area, and they also house a tabernacle containing a guest book and a list of all the buried soldiers. Although 2048 headstones stretch out in pristine rows enclosed by pines and maples marking the dead of the 3rd Division and the graves of 15 airmen, it is a simple feat to find Albert’s grave thanks to the schematic of the cemetery.



As is typical of war cemeteries in France, the French Government granted Canada a perpetual concession to the land occupied by the cemetery. Local school children tend the graves and each is marked by flowers. It is a humbling experience to be present in this hallowed place and to read the inscriptions on the graves of so many young men.

Grave Reference: IV. F. 5.
In Memory of Private Albert Charles Chenier
H/16803, South Saskatchewan Regiment, R.C.I.C.
He died of wounds in France on 15 August 1944 and is remembered with honour.

France_Beny-sur-Mer_Albert Chenier (2)

A few verses recorded from the stones of the fallen:

Ever loving remembrance of our dearest and our best
Who gave his all so bravely
Peace, perfect peace – June 9, 1944.

He died for our freedom
May we be worthy of his supreme sacrifice.

Rest my son in thy far off grave
You died for your country like a hero brave.