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For the two years my family lived in Belgium, we lived in Le Roeulx, which is just east of Charleroi. My neigborhood was mostly Belgian, but due to the close proximity to SHAPE and Mons, a number of Americans also lived in the area. Mostly, they were either DODDS teachers or personell (my mom and dad, for example), or officer’s families. Since I, as well as the other American kids in the area, went to High School (Grades 8 & 9) on SHAPE, a chartered bus made it’s route through here.

At anyrate, googling Le Roeulx has lead me to discover that it has it’s own flag:

As well as a very long history, care of

Le Rœulx, known in the past as Rues (1166-1188), Ruz (1188-1191), Rueth, Ruels, Roelx and Reux, was probably named after the Latin word rhodus (or Germanic röde), “a cleared charcoal forest”. The village developed around the St. Feuillien abbey, built around 1125. Born as Faelan in Western Ireland around 600, Feuillien left Ireland as a missionary with his two brothers. After seven years spent in England and France, Feuillien met St. Gertrude, Abbess of Nivelles in 645. The abbess granted him land in Fosses, where he founded a monastery in 651. In 655, on their way from Nivelles to France, Feuillien and his fellows were killed and beheaded by rascals. The murderers hid the saint’s body in a pigpen, where it was found only two months later, and brought back with great pump to Fosses via Nivelles. The place where Feuillien’s body had been found became a place of pilgrimage, marked by a cross later replaced by the Sénophe chapel. The lower maxillary of the saint is kept in a shrine shown in the St. Niccolas church of Le Rœulx.

Around 1125, monks from the Norbertine order set up the St. Feuillien abbey around the chapel. The abbey, with an estate spreading over 15 ha, was the origin of the town of Le Rœulx. The abbey only housed 20-40 monks but also a doctor, a surgeon, a chemist, cooks, a brewer, a gardener… The abbey flourished but its power was more and more challenged by the lords of Le Rœulx. The last monks were expelled in 1797, following the French Revolution. The abbey was purchased by Papin, Mayor of Le Rœulx, and in the early XIXth century by the Croÿ family. Most buildings were suppressed in order to set up the northern part of the park of the castle. The only remains of the abbey are the gate (1770), the gatekeeper’s house, a part of the wall of the vegetable garden and cellars. Paintings and stalls, preserved by Norbert Durieu, last Abbot and later Canon in Tournai, were transferred into the cathedral of Tournai. A monstrance made in 1543, maybe by Estiévin de Bussy, is kept in the Museum of the St. Vincent Collegiate Chapter of Soignies; it is decorated with the three statues of God, Apostle St. Peter bearing a key and St. Paul, and surmonted by the Dove of the Holy Spirit and Jesus on the Cross; the monstrance is brought back to Le Rœulx once a year, on the Adoration’s Sunday.
Saint-Feuillin had given his name to the local beer, a top-fermenting ale brewed by four generations of the Friart family since 1873.


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