In Maureillas las Illas, near the Spanish border, the Community of La Roche d’Or offers a vast welcoming space. The “biblical” landscape of this region, the Mediterranean forest, the numerous pathways, streams and waterfalls make this space an incredible location for rejuvenation.
The community has followed its mission of spreading the Gospel with a warm welcome, speaking the words and making the most of the property. In a simple climate, reminiscent of Nazareth, Les Fontanilles offers a host of retreats: travelling retreats, working in the heart of nature, a place for inner reflection and peace, spontaneous conversations about life and faith, it all comes together to create the silence and space for rejuvenation that is so needed today!
In 1986, the Community acquired Mas Quinta in Maureillas: a pied a terre for Florin Callerand when he attended Amelie-les-Bains (25km away) for several sessions of treatments. For both him and the community, this house was a place of rest, to resource oneself, of intense writing work, highlighting this place that is so similar to the Holy Land in so many ways!
Very quickly, a seed was planted in Father Callerand’s heart for creating a new space to spread the gospel. However there were so many bureaucratic obstacles that, in spite of several projects he never saw them come to life.
Oaks like the Carmel Mountains, olive trees like Jerusalem and eucalyptus like Athens or Patmos...! Florin Callerand
It was only in 2000 that the opportunity arose to buy the houses of present-day Les Fontanilles. Father Roger Robert, Françoise Porte and the whole Community committed to the adventure of Les Fontanilles. The idea was to create and run a second “house” with a permanent community presence.
In 2003 the first retreats were launched. From the beginning it was clear that the welcome spaces would need to be made bigger. But there were also many obstacles slowing down the projects. It was only in 2011 that building works could finally begin. After two years of closure due to works, the site re-opened its doors in 2014, and started developing a programme of retreats and hosting groups from the diocese and region.