Category Archives: French Revolution

Feb 1 – Bl Guillame’ Repin, (1709-1794), Priest, & 98 Companions, Martyrs of Angers

Angers 013, Poland, Chelmno
-arrested Daughters of Charity, Srs Odile Baumgarten, DC & Marie-Anne Vaillot, DC

“First, there are the many martyrs who, in the Diocese of Angers , in the time of the French Revolution, accepted death because they wanted to, in the words of William Repin, “keep their faith and religion “firmly attached to the Roman Catholic Church; priests, they refused to take an oath considered schismatic, they would not abandon their pastoral care; laity, they remained faithful to the priests at the Mass celebrated by them, the signs of their worship to Mary and the saints.

Undoubtedly, in a context of great ideological tensions, political and military, one could pose to them infidelity suspicions to the homeland, we have them, in the “whereas” of sentences, accused of compromising with “the forces anti-revolutionary “; it is also well in almost all the persecutions, yesterday and today. But for the men and women whose names were chosen – among many others probably also deserving – they answered the interrogations of the courts, leaves no doubt about their determination to remain faithful – risking their lives – that their faith required, nor the profound reason for their condemnation, hatred of the faith that their judges despised as “unsustainable devotion” and “fanaticism.”

We remain in awe of the decisive answers, calm, brief, frank, humble, that have nothing provocative, but are clear and firm on the essential: the fidelity to the Church. So say the priests, all guillotined as their venerable dean William Repin, the nuns who refuse to even suggest they were sworn in, the four laymen: simply quote the testimony of one of them (Antoine Fournier): “so you should suffer the death in defense of your religion? ” – ” Yes “. Thus speak these eighty women, which cannot be accused of armed rebellion! Some had previously expressed a desire to die for the name of Jesus rather than renounce the religion (Renée Feillatreau).  (Fifteen, who could afford it by confiscation of their goods, were guillotined.  The eighty-four others were shot and dumped in mass graves.)

True Christians, they also evidenced by their refusal to hate their tormentors, for their pardon their desire for peace for all: “I have asked the Good Lord for the peace and unity of all” (Marie Cassin) . Finally, their last moments show the depth of their faith. Some sing hymns and psalms to the place of execution; “They ask few minutes to make to God the sacrifice of their lives, they did so fervently that their torturers themselves were astonished.” Sister Marie-Anne, Daughter of Charity, comforts and his sister, “We’ll have the joy of seeing God and possessing Him for all eternity … and we will be owned without fear of being separated” (testimony of Abbot Gruget).

Today these ninety-nine martyrs of Angers are associated, in the glory of beatification, the first of them, Father Noel Pinot beatified for almost 60 years.”
-Homily of Pope John Paul II, 19 Feb 1984, Mass of Beatification

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Blessed Noel Pinot, priest & martyr (feast February 21), Noel was born at Angers in 1747. He became a priest and excelled in ministering to the sick. In 1788, he was made pastor at a parish in Louroux Beconnais, which he revitalized spiritually through his piety and preaching.

Father Noel refused to take the oath of allegiance to the new French Republic which denied the authority of the Church, and was sentenced to be deprived of his parish for two years. Nonetheless, he continued to carry out his ministry in secret. Later, the holy priest even took clandestine possession of his parish and continued his pastoral work, managing to avoid capture for his defiance of the Revolutionary edict.

However, one day while fully vested for Mass, Father Noel was captured and dragged through the streets to the jeers of hostile spectators and soldiers. He remained in jail for twelve days and was given the death sentence for refusing to take the oath. The holy priest went to the guillotine still vested for Mass and uttering the words that began the pre-Vatican II Mass: “I will go to the altar of God, to God Who gives joy to my youth.” He joined his sacrifice to that of his Master on February 21, 1794, and was beatified in 1926.

Blessed Renee-Marie Feillatreau was born in Angers, France, in 1751. A wife and mother, she was accused of being involved with Catholic “brigands,” of encouraging non-conformist priests, robbing the Republic by hiding sacred vestments and vessels, and of shouting, “Long live religion! Long live the King!” Her guilt actually lay in her devotion to her Catholic faith.

Renee-Marie declared before her judges that she would rather die than renounce her faith, and that she did indeed visit and protect priests of the Roman Catholic Church and had attended their Masses.

Blessed Renee-Marie Feillatreau was guillotined on March 28, 1794, and beatified in 1984.

Angers 005

Names of the beati by canonical state:

Guillaume Répin (1709-1794), Priest

Priests (11).
1. Laurent Bâtard
2. François-Louis Chartier
3. André Fardeau
4. Jacques Laigneau de Langellerie
5. Jean-Michel Langevin
6. Jacques Ledoyen
7. Jean-Baptiste Lego
8. René Lego
9. Joseph Moreau
10. François Peltier
11. Pierre Tessier

Religious (3).
12. Odile Baumgarten
13. Rosalie du Verdier de la Sorinière
14. Marie-Anne Vaillot

Laymen (4).
15. Pierre Delépine
16. Antoine Fournier
17. Pierre Frémond
18. Jean Ménard

Laywomen (80).
19. Gabrielle Androuin
20. Perrine Androuin
21. Suzanne Androuin
22. Victoire Bauduceau Réveillère
23. Françoise Bellanger
24. Louise Bessay de la Voûte
25. Perrine Besson
26. Madeleine Blond
27. Françoise Bonneau
28. Renée Bourgeais Juret
29. Jeanne Bourigault
30. Perrine Bourigault
31. Madeleine Cady
32. Renée Cailleau Girault
33. Marie Cassin
34. Marie-Jeanne Chauvigné Rorteau
35. Simone Chauvigné Charbonneau
36. Catherine Cottenceau
37. Carole Davy
38. Louise-Aimée Dean de Luigné
39. Marie de la Dive du Verdier
40. Anne-Françoise de Villeneuve
41. Catherine du Verdier de la Sorinière
42. Marie-Louise du Verdier de la Sorinière
43. Marie Fasseuse
44. Renée-Marie Feillatreau
45. Marie Forestier
46. Jeanne Fouchard Chalonneau
47. Marie Gallard Queson
48. Marie Gasnier Mercier
49. Marie Gingueneau Couffard
50. Jeanne Gourdon Moreau
51. Marie Grillard
52. Renée Grillard
53. Perrine Grille
54. Jeanne Gruget Doly
55. Victoire Gusteau
56. Marie-Anne Hacher du Bois
57. Anne Hmard
58. Marie Lardeux
59. Perrine Laurent
60. Perrine Ledoyen
61. Jeanne-Marie Leduc Paquier
62. Marie Lenée Lepage Varancé
63. Marie Leroy Brevet
64. Marie Leroy
65. Carola Lucas
66. Renée Martin
67. Anne Maugrain
68. Françoise Michau
69. Françoise Micheneau Gillot
70. Jacqueline Monnier
71. Jeanne Onillon
72. Françoise Pagis Roulleau
73. Madeleine Perrotin Rousseau
74. Perrine Phélyppeaux Sailland
75. Marie Pichery Delahaye
76. Monique Pichery
77. Marie Piou Supiot
78. Louise Poirier Barré
79. Perrine-Renée Potier Turpault
80. Marie-Geneviève Poulain de la Forestrie
81. Marthe Poulain de la Forestrie
82. Félicité Pricet
83. Rose Quenion
84. Louise Rallier de la Tertinière Dean de Luigné
85. Renée Regault Papin
86. Marguerite Rivière Huau
87. Marguerite Robin
88. Marie Rochard
89. Marie Roger Chartier
90. Marie Roualt Bouju
91. Jeanne-Marie Sailland d’Epinatz
92. Madeleine Sailland d’Epinatz
93. Perrine-Jeanne Sailland d’Epinatz
94. Madeleine Sallé
95. Renée Seichet Dacy
96. Françoise Suhard Ménard
97. Jeanne Thomas Delaunay
98. Renée Valin

Angers 006

Names of beati by date of execution:

30 October 1793 in Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)

1. JEAN-MICHEL LANGEVIN
priest of the diocese of Angers
born: 28 September 1731 in Ingrandes, Maine-et-Loire (France)

01 January 1794 in Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)

2. RENÉ LEGO
priest of the diocese of Angers
born: 05 October 1764 in La Flèche, Sarthe (France)
3. JEAN LEGO
priest of the diocese of Angers
born: 13 May 1766 in La Flèche, Sarthe (France)

02 January 1794 in Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)

4. GUILLAUME REPIN
priest of the diocese of Angers
born: 26 August 1709 in Thouarcé, Maine-et-Loire (France)
5. LAURENT BATARD
priest of the diocese of Angers
born: 04 February 1744 in Saint-Maurille de Chalonnes-sur-Loire, Maine-et-Loire (France)

05 January 1794 in Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)

6. JACQUES LEDOYEN
priest of the diocese of Angers
born: 03 April 1760 in Rochefort-sur-Loire, Maine-et-Loire (France)
7. FRANÇOIS PELTIER
priest of the diocese of Angers
born: 26 April 1728 in Savennières, Maine-et-Loire (France)
8. PIERRE TESSIER
priest of the diocese of Angers
born: 11 May 1766 in La Trinité-d’Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)

12 January 1794 in Avrillé, Maine-et-Loire (France)

9. ANTOINE FOURNIER
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 26 January 1736 in La Poitevinière, Maine-et-Loire (France)

18 January 1794 in Avrillé, Maine-et-Loire (France)

10. VICTOIRE GUSTEAU
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: ca. 1745 in Châtillon-sur-Sèvre, Deux-Sèvres (France)
11. CHARLOTTE LUCAS
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 01 April 1752 in Chalonnes-sur-Loire, Maine-et-Loire (France)
12. MONIQUE PICHERY
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 04 April 1762 in Chalonnes-sur-Loire, Maine-et-Loire (France)
13. FÉLICITÉ PRICET
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: ca. 1745 in Châtillon-sur-Sèvre, Maine-et-Loire (France)

26 January 1794 in Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)

14. MARIE DE LA DIVE veuve DU VERDIER DE LA SORINIÈRE
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 18 May 1723 in Saint-Crespin-sur-Moine, Maine-et-Loire (France)

27 January 1794 in Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)

15. ROSALIE DU VERDIER DE LA SORINIÈRE [SŒUR SAINT CELESTE]
professed religious, Benedictine Nuns of Our Lady of Calvary (n.o.)
born: 12 August 1745 in Saint-Pierre de Chemillé, Maine-et-Loire (France)

01 February 1794 in Avrillé, Maine-et-Loire (France)

16. MARIE-ANNE VAILLOT
vowed member, Daughters of Charity of Saint Vincent de Paul
born: 13 May 1736 in Fontainebleau, Maine-et-Loire (France)
17. ODILE BAUMGARTEN
vowed member, Daughters of Charity of Saint Vincent de Paul
born: 15 November 1750 in Gondrexange, Moselle (France)
18. GABRIELLE ANDROUIN
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 06 September 1755 in Saint-Lambert-du-Lattay, Maine-et-Loire (France)
19. PERRINE ANDROUIN
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 31 August 1760 in Saint-Lambert-du-Lattay, Maine-et-Loire (France)
20. SUZANNE ANDROUIN
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 16 March 1757 in Saint-Lambert-du-Lattay, Maine-et-Loire (France)
21. VICTOIRE BAUDUCEAU épouse RÉVÉLIÈRE
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 20 September 1745 in Thouars, Deux-Sèvres (France)
22. FRANÇOISE BELLANGER
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 24 June 1735 in La Trinité-d’Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)
23. PERRINE BESSON
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: ca. 1742 in Essarts, Vendée (France)
24. MADELEINE BLOND
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: ca. 1763 in Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)
25. FRANÇOISE BONNEAU
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: ca. 1763 in Saint-Léger-en-Anjou (a.k.a. Saint-Léger-sous-Cholet), Maine-et-Loire (France)
26. JEANNE BOURIGAULT
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 24 October 1757 in Chaudefonds, Maine-et-Loire (France)
27. RENÉE CAILLEAU épouse GIRAULT
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 06 July 1752 in Saint-Aubin-de-Luigné, Maine-et-Loire (France)
28. MARIE CASSIN épouse MOREAU
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 21 January 1750 in Chanteloup, Maine-et-Loire (France)
29. SIMONE CHAUVIGNÉ veuve CHARBONNEAU
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 12 March 1728 in Chaudefonds, Maine-et-Loire (France)
30. MARIE-JEANNE CHAUVIGNÉ épouse RORTEAU
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 21 February 1755 in La Jumellière, Maine-et-Loire (France)
31. CATHERINE COTTANCEAU
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: ca. 1733 in Bressuire, Deux-Sèvres (France)
32. CHARLOTTE DAVY
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 19 October 1760 in Chalonnes-sur-Loire, Maine-et-Loire (France)
33. LOUISE DÉAN DE LUIGNÉ
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 17 November 1757 in Argeton-Notre-Dame, Mayenne (France)
34. ANNE-FRANÇOISE DE VILLENEUVE
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 11 September 1741 in Seiches-sur-le-Loir, Maine-et-Loire (France)
35. MARIE FAUSSEUSE épouse BANCHEREAU
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: ca. 1740 in Boësse, Deux-Sèvres (France)
36. JEANNE FOUCHARD épouse CHALONNEAU
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 10 September 1747 in Chalonnes-sur-Loire, Maine-et-Loire (France)
37. MARIE GALLARD épouse QUESSON
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: ca. 1739 in Saint-Laurent-de-la-Plaine, Maine-et-Loire (France)
38. MARIE GASNIER épouse MERCIER
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 08 November 1756 in Ménil, Mayenne (France)
39. MARIE GRILLARD
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 05 October 1753 in Saint-Pierre de Cholet, Maine-et-Loire (France)
40. RENÉE GRILLARD
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 10 February 1766 in Saint-Pierre de Cholet, Maine-et-Loire (France)
41. PERRINE GRILLE
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 06 February 1742 in Rochefort-sur-Loire, Maine-et-Loire (France)
42. JEANNE GRUGET veuve DOLY
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: ca. 1745 in Châtillon-sur-Sevre, Deux-Sèvres (France)
43. ANNE HAMARD
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: ca. 1742 in Saint-Clément, Maine-et-Loire (France)
44. PERRINE LEDOYEN
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 16 September 1764 in Saint-Aubin-de Luigné, Maine-et-Loire (France)
45. MARIE LENÉE épouse LEPAGE DE VARANCÉ
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 14 July 1729 in Saint-Nicolas de Saumur, Maine-et-Loire (France)
46. MARIE LEROY épouse BREVET
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: ca. 1755 in (?)
47. MARIE LEROY
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 19 May 1771 in Montilliers, Maine-et-Loire (France)
48. RENÉE MARTIN épouse MARTIN
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: ca. 1752 in (?)
49. FRANÇOISE MICHAU
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: ca. 1765 in (?)
50. JACQUINE MONNIER
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 16 January 1726 in Saint-Melaine, Maine-et-Loire (France)
51. FRANÇOISE PAGIS épouse RAILLEAU
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 14 October 1732 in Gouis, Maine-et-Loire (France)
52. MADELEINE PERROTIN veuve ROUSSEAU
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 30 March 1744 in Saint-Germain-des-Près, Maine-et-Loire (France)
53. PERRINE-CHARLOTTE PHELIPPEAUX épouse SAILLAND D’EPINATZ
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 13 May 1740 in Saint-Nicolas de Saumur, Maine-et-Loire (France)
54. MARIE ANNE PICHERY épouse DELAHAYE
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 30 July 1754 in Chalonnes-sur-Loire, Maine-et-Loire (France)
55. ROSE QUENION
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 20 January 1764 in Mozé-sur-Louet, Maine-et-Loire (France)
56. LOUISE-OLYMPE RALLIER DE LA TERTINIÈRE veuve DÉAN DE LUIGNÉ
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 24 April 1732 in Châteaugontier, Mayenne (France)
57. MARGUERITE RIVIÈRE épouse HUAU
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 20 August 1756 in La Ferrière-de-Flée, Maine-et-Loire (France)
58. MARIE ROUAULT épouse BOUJU
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 26 October 1744 in Vezins, Maine-et-Loire (France)
59. PERRINE SAILLAND D’EPINATZ
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 24 March 1768 in Saint-Nicolas de Saumur, Maine-et-Loire (France)
60. JEANNE SAILLAND D’EPINATZ
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 03 July 1769 in Saint-Nicolas de Saumur, Maine-et-Loire (France)
61. MADELEINE SAILLAND D’EPINATZ
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 09 August 1770 in Saint-Nicolas de Saumur, Maine-et-Loire (France)
62. RENÉE VALIN
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 08 March 1760 in Chaudefonds, Maine-et-Loire (France)

10 February 1794 in Avrillé, Maine-et-Loire (France)

63. LOUISE BESSAY DE LA VOUTE
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 22 August 1721 in Saint-Mars-des-Prés, Vendée (France)
64. CATHERINE DU VERDIER DE LA SORINIÈRE
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 29 June 1758 in Saint-Pierre de Chemillé, Maine-et-Loire (France)
65. MARIE-LOUISE DU VERDIER DE LA SORINIÈRE
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 27 June 1765 in Saint-Pierre de Chemillé, Maine-et-Loire (France)
66. PIERRE FRÉMOND
layperson of the diocese of Angers
Marie-Anne Hacher du Bois born: 16 September 1754 in Chaudefonds, Maine-et-Loire (France)
67. MARIE-ANNE HACHER DU BOIS
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 03 April 1765 in Jallais, Maine-et-Loire (France)
68. LOUISE POIRIER épouse BARRÉ
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 22 February 1754 in Le Longeron, Maine-et-Loire (France)

22 March 1794 in Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)

69. FRANÇOIS CHARTIER
priest of the diocese of Angers
born: 06 June 1752 in Marigné, Maine-et-Loire (France)

28 March 1794 in Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)

70. RENÉE-MARIE FEILLATREAU épouse DUMONT
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 08 February 1751 in Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)

16 April 1794 in Avrillé, Maine-et-Loire (France)

71. PIERRE DELÉPINE
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 24 May 1732 in Marigné, Maine-et-Loire (France)
72. JEAN MÉNARD
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 16 November 1736 in Andigné, Maine-et-Loire (France)
73. RENÉE BOURGEAIS veuve JURET
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 12 November 1751 in Montjean, Maine-et-Loire (France)
74. PERRINE BOURIGAULT
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 07 August 1743 in Montjean, Maine-et-Loire (France)
75. MADELEINE CADY épouse DESVIGNES
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 07 April 1756 in Saint-Maurille de Chalonnes-sur-Loire, Maine-et-Loire (France)
76. MARIE FORESTIER
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 16 January 1768 in Montjean, Maine-et-Loire (France)
77. MARIE GINGUENEAU veuve COIFFARD
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: ca. 1739 in (?)
78. JEANNE GOURDON veuve MOREAU
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 08 October 1733 in Sainte-Christine, Maine-et-Loire (France)
79. MARIE LARDEUX
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: ca. 1748 in (?)
80. PERRINE LAURENT
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 02 September 1746 in Louvaines, Maine-et-Loire (France)
81. JEANNE LEDUC épouse PAQUIER
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 10 February 1754 in Chalonnes-sur-Loire, Maine-et-Loire (France)
82. ANNE MAUGRAIN
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 12 April 1760 in Rochefort-sur-Loire, Maine-et-Loire (France)
83. FRANÇOISE MICHENEAU veuve GILLOT
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 19 May 1737 in Chanteloup-les-Bois, Maine-et-Loire (France)
84. JEANNE ONILLON veuve ONILLON
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 19 April 1753 in Montjean, Maine-et-Loire (France)
85. MARIE PIOU épouse SUPIOT
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 19 May 1755 in Montrevault, Maine-et-Loire (France)
86. PERRINE POTTIER épouse TURPAULT
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 26 April 1750 in Cléré-sur-Layon, Maine-et-Loire (France)
87. MARIE-GENEVIEVE POULAIN DE LA FORESTRIE
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 03 January 1741 in Lion-d’Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)
88. MARTHE POULAIN DE LA FORESTRIE
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 02 October 1743 in Lion-d’Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)
89. RENÉE RIGAULT épouse PAPIN
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 14 May 1750 in Saint-Florent-le-Vieil, Maine-et-Loire (France)
90. MARGUERITE ROBIN
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 22 December 1725 in Montjean, Maine-et-Loire (France)
91. MARIE RECHARD
layperson of the diocese of Angers
born: 29 April 1763 in Montjean, Maine-et-Loire (France)
92. MARIE ROGER veuve CHARTIER
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 14 January 1727 in Montjean, Maine-et-Loire (France)
93. MADELEINE SALLÉ épouse HAVARD
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: ca. 1751 in (?)
94. RENÉE SECHET veuve DAVY
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: 28 December 1753 in Montjean, Maine-et-Loire (France)
95. FRANÇOISE SUHARD veuve MÉNARD
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: February 5, 1731 in Saint-Gemmes-d’Andigné, Maine-et-Loire (France)
96. JEANNE THOMAS veuve DELAUNAY
layperson of the diocese of Angers; married
born: ca. 1730 in (?)

18 April 1794 in Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)

97. JOSEPH MOREAU
priest of the diocese of Angers
born: 21 October 1763 in Saint-Laurent-de-la-Plaine, Maine-et-Loire (France)

24 August 1794 in Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)

98. ANDRÉ FARDEAU
priest of the diocese of Angers
born: 19 November 1761 in Soucelles, Maine-et-Loire (France)

14 October 1794 in Angers, Maine-et-Loire (France)

99. JACQUES LAIGNEAU DE LANGELLERIE
priest of the diocese of Angers
born: 17 April 1747 in La Flèche, Sarthe (France)

The hospital of Saint-Jean was one of the oldest hospitals in France, founded in 1175 by Henri Plantagenet, Count of Anjou and King of England, to expiate for the murder of Thomas Becket. By the seventeenth century it needed restructuring, as the mayor, aldermen, and townspeople attested. The Bishop of Angers, Claude de Rueil, and the Abbe de Vaux, addressed themselves to Saint Vincent de Paul with the request for the Daughters of Charity. In December 1639 Saint Louise de Marillac herself brought there the first Daughters of Charity, the first to leave the environs of Paris and the Motherhouse. The contract between the Company of the Daughters of Charity and the administrators of the hospital was signed February 1, 1640.

In the rules which he wrote in collaboration with Saint Louise, Saint Vincent specified the reasons for the mission to Angers:

“The Daughters of Charity of the poor sick have gone to Angers to honor Our Lord, the Father of the Poor and His Blessed Mother, to assist, both bodily and spiritually, the sick poor of the Hotel Dieu in that city. Corporally by ministering to them and providing them with food and medicine, and spiritually by instructing the sick in the things necessary to salvation and, when they need a confession of their whole past life, by arranging the means for it, for those who would die in this state and for those who would be cured by resolving never more to offend God.”

Saint Vincent then proposed for them the means to be faithful to God and to become Good Servants of the Poor:

“The first thing Our Lord asks of them is that they love Him above all and that all their actions be done for love of Him. Secondly, that they cherish each other as Sisters whom He has united by the bond of His love, and the sick poor as their masters since Our Lord is in them and they in Our Lord.”

In 1790 the revolutionary Assembly in France ordered the confiscation of all religious property and on July 12, 1790 promulgated the Civil Constitution of the Clergy which made the clergy functionaries of the state and the Church a national church.

In November the government demanded that the clergy take a prescribed oath: “I swear to be faithful to the nation, to the law, to the king, and to uphold with all my power the Constitution decreed by the National Assembly and accepted by the king.”

The Reign of Terror in Angers

On September 2, 1793, local revolutionaries were annoyed to hear that the Sisters were still working peacefully at the hospital of Saint-Jean. A petition was sent to the municipality: at all cost, and as soon as possible, the Sisters must be made to take the oath and shed their habit. The Sisters replied that the oath was meant only for public office holders; that their sole function was to look after the sick; that up to this time they had not disturbed public order; that, for these reasons, they considered themselves dispensed from all oaths, and that they would not take any. Yet, some weeks later the sisters were made to change their habits. From Sister Marie-Anne’s own words, on the day of her interrogation: the sacrifice of the holy habit was one of the most painful of her life. On their new headdress the Sisters had to wear the national cockade, which had been made obligatory for women by law.

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The year 1793 drew to a close amidst continual alarms. On the night of November 11, the cathedral of Angers was pillaged, the statues mutilated or broken, the tombs desecrated. The clock of the church of the Trinity, close by the hospital, was pulled down, the crucifix destroyed. Christmas passed without Mass. The very name of Christmas had been eliminated from the Republican calendar.”

Notre Père qui êtes aux cieux, que votre nom soit sanctifié, que votre règne arrive, que votre volonté soit faite sur la terre comme au ciel. Donnez nous aujourd’hui notre pain quotidien; pardonnez nous nos offenses comme nous pardonnons à ceux qui nous ont offensés; et ne nous laissez pas succomber à la tentation; mais délivrez nous du mal. Ainsi soit-il.

Je vous salue Marie, Marie pleine de grâce, le Seigneur est avec vous, Vous êtes bénieentre toute les femmes, et Jésus, le fruit de vos entrailles, est béni. Sainte Marie, Mère de Dieu, priez pour nous, pauvres pécheurs, maintenant et à l’heure de notre mort. Ainsi soit-il

Je crois en Dieu, le Père tout puissant, Créateur du ciel et de la terre, et en Jésus-Christ son fils unique, Notre-Seigneur, qui a été conçu du Saint Esprit, est né de la Vierge Marie, a souffert sous Ponce Pilate, a été crucifié, est mort, a été enseveli; est descendu aux enfers; le troisième jour, est ressucité des morts, est monté aux cieux, est assis à la droite de Dieu le Père tout-puissant, d’où il viendra juger les vivants et les morts.

Je crois au Saint Esprit, à la Sainte Eglise Catholique, à la communion des Saints, à la rémission des péchés, à la résurection de la chair, à la vie éternelle. Ainsi soit-il

Merci, Le Sacré Coeur de Jésus!

Dieu Le Roy!

Love,
Matthew

Jan 22 – Bl William Joseph Chaminade, SM, (1761-1850) – Founder of the Marianists, A Man of Faith

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To the south of Bordeaux a road leads down across the Pyrenees into Spain. This was the road Father William Joseph Chaminade followed into exile in September of 1797. He was a French priest in disguise, escaping the enemies of the Church in his native land. Close by lay the danger of arrest. Other priests had already died as martyrs. But Father Chaminade was at peace. He was a man of faith.

The night before his journey into exile Father Chaminade wrote: “What is a faithful man to do in the chaos of events which seem to swallow him up? He must sustain himself calmly by Faith. Faith will make him adore the eternal plan of God. Faith will assure him that to those who love God all things work together for good.”

The Vision
In Saragossa, Spain, near the Shrine of Our Lady of the Pillar, Father Chaminade settled down to wait out his exile. Here he prayed and planned for his future work. And here he received from Our Lady a special message. He was to be Mary’s missionary. He was to found a society of religious who would work with her to restore the Faith in France.

So vivid and detailed was the inspiration given to Father Chaminade, that years later he could say to his first religious, “As I see you now before me, I saw you in spirit at Saragossa, long before the foundation of the Society. It was Mary who conceived the plan of the Society. It was she who laid its foundations, and she will continue to preserve it.”

Two of Father Chaminade’s favorite prayers reveal the intensity of his love of God and of Mary:
“The most just, most high, and most amiable will of God be done, praised, and eternally exalted in all things!”
“May the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit be glorified in all places through the Immaculate Virgin Mary.”

The beginning work . . .
Father Chaminade returned to Bordeaux in 1800. There he established Sodalities of OurLady which spread their influence throughout France. He considered himself a missionary of Mary. Strong in his love for Our Blessed Mother, he gathered men and women around him who dedicated their lives to her service.

Working together, these men and women of Faith began to rebuild the Church which had been destroyed. The Society of Mary and the Daughters of Mary sprang from the sodalities of Father Chaminade. These groups continue to do Mary’s work in countries all over the world. Because Chaminade’s work was the work of Mary, it remains. And the words of this man of Faith still speak to us today.

From the Chapel of the Madeleine as from a fountain, grace poured throughout the entire city of Bordeaux and southern France. To this day the Madeleine, in the old down-town section of Bordeaux, is a center of Christian life. There Marianist priests and brothers, members of the religious congregation Father Chaminade founded, minister to the people. Many come to pray, to receive the Sacraments, or to seek spiritual refreshment.

All kinds of people involved . . .
From the beginning Father Chaminade invited people from varied backgrounds to work with him. There were husbands and wives, teachers, business men, young men and women, seminarians, priests, and representatives of every class.

-Together they worked to rebuild the shattered Faith in France.
-Together they found a deepening of their own Faith in the imitation of Jesus.
-Together they responded to the words of Mary at Cana, “Do whatever He tells you.”

Father Chaminade called this group the Family of Mary. Their outstanding characteristic was a deep spirit of Faith. For Chaminade, Faith expresses itself most perfectly in the imitation of Christ:

“A true Christian cannot live any life but the life of Our Savior Jesus. When we try to imitate Him the divine plan is carried out in our lives. The Blessed Virgin is our Model. She is a very exact copy of her Son Jesus. When we are devoted to Mary we will imitate Jesus.” “YOU MUST TASTE WHAT YOU BELIEVE.”- Father Chaminade

The importance of Mary
Father Chaminade never tired of speaking about the strong, victorious Virgin Mother of Christ:
“Jesus made Mary the companion of His labors, of His joy, of His preaching, of His death. Mary had a part in all the glorious, joyous, and sorrowful mysteries of Jesus. The deposit of the Faith is entirely in Mary. At the foot of the Cross she held the place of the Church. The mysteries which were announced to Mary were accomplished because she believed.”

History of the beatification cause
Chaminade died January 22, 1850. He was buried in the Carthusian cemetery in Bordeaux. In 1871 his remains were removed from the priest’s vault to a large square plot where a monument was erected to his memory. Father John Lalanne, the first Marianist, spoke on the occasion. He said, “We were witnesses during our younger days of his life and words. We affirm that we never saw him spend a day, not even a single hour at anything which did not relate directly to God and to the welfare of souls.”

Before long people began to come to his tomb. Some of them remembered him as a saintly old priest. Others knew only that a holy man was buried there.

In 1973 Pope Paul VI proclaimed that Father Chaminade had practiced virtue in a heroic degree. This proclamation of the Church is an official step toward the beatification and canonization of Father Chaminade.

Prayer +
O God, light of the faithful and shepherd of souls,
who set blessed William Joseph Chaminade in the Church
to feed your sheep by his words and form them by his example,
grant that through his intercession
we may keep the faith he taught by his words
and follow the way he showed by his example.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
(from The Roman Missal: Common of Pastors—For One Pastor)

Love,
Matthew

Oct 23 – The Eleven Ursuline Martyrs of Valenciennes, France d. 1794

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A group of eleven nuns of the Ursuline Order who were arrested by authorities of the French revolutionary government and guillotined between October 17 and 23, 1794, at Valenciennes. Their crime: they reopened a school in contravention to the government decree prohibiting unapproved educational institutions from functioning. The nuns were: Sr Clotilde Paillot, OSU, superior; Sr Marie Louise Ducret, OSU; Sr Marie Magdalen Desjardin, OSU; Sr Marie Louise Vanot, OSU; Sr Françoise Lacroix, OSU; Sr Margaret Leroux, OSU; Sr Anne Marie Erraux, OSU; Sr Anne Joseph Leroux, OSU; Sr Gabrielle Bourla, OSU; Sr Jane Louis Barré, OSU; and Sr Jane Rievie Prin, OSU. The prioress, Sr Clotilde Paillot, OSU, tried to take the entire blame on herself for any illegal actions but the tribunal refused to agree and all were condemned to the guillotine. Sr Marie Erraux, OSU was utterly terrified and Sr Clotilde comforted and supported her, promising to stay close beside her.

Valenciennes is within the boundary of France but very close to the border of the Austrian Netherlands (present day Belgium). The Revolutionary government closed a larger number of religious houses and schools, including that of the Ursulines. Their property seized and confiscated, evicted, the Ursulines moved across the border to Mons in the Netherlands, where another Ursuline monastery gave them shelter.

In 1793 Austria invaded northern France to vindicate its sovereignty over the Austrian Netherlands. In doing so it also seized a strip of French territory that included Valenciennes. The evicted nuns therefore returned to Valenciennes, now Austrian, and reopened their school. But the French retaliated and recaptured Valenciennes. What were the poor nuns to do now? They decided to continue with their school in their old home.

Shortly thereafter, the French government arrested and jailed the Ursulines of Valenciennes. On what charge? That they were emigrees who had returned to France without permission and were illegally conducting a religious school! Five of them were brought to trial on October 17, 1794. They stated frankly that they had returned to teach the Catholic religion. For this crime they were condemned to death by the anti-Christian French authorities.

One of the sisters, Sr Marie Augustine Dejardin, OSU, said to the mother superior (who had not yet been sentenced), “Mother, you taught us to be valiant, and now that we are going to be crowned, you weep!”

Five days later the same superior, Sr Marie Clotilde Paillot, OSU, and the other five nuns were condemned to die in the same manner. Mother Paillot made the public declaration, “We die for the faith of the Catholic, Apostolic Roman Church!” This time the victims were transported to the guillotine in a tumbril or dump-cart.

Now, the commissioners had overlooked a lay sister of the community, Cordule Barre. Cordule would not be separated from her sisters. Hurrying over to the cart, she climbed in of her own accord, and was executed with the rest. As they moved on to the scaffold, all six sang the Litany of Our Lady. What do Catholic martyrs do facing their immanent death? They sing!

Litany of Our Lady

Lord have mercy.
Christ have mercy.
Lord have mercy.
Christ hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us.
God, the Father of Heaven, have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the word, have mercy on us.
God the Holy Spirit, have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, one God, have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, pray for us.
Holy Mother of God, pray for us.
Holy Virgin of virgins, pray for us.
Mother of Christ, pray for us.
Mother of the Church, pray for us.
Mother of Divine Grace, pray for us.
Mother most pure, pray for us.
Mother most chaste, pray for us.
Mother inviolate, pray for us.
Mother undefiled, pray for us.
Mother most amiable, pray for us.
Mother most admirable, pray for us.
Mother of good counsel, pray for us.
Mother of our Creator, pray for us.
Mother of our Savior, pray for us.
Virgin most prudent, pray for us.
Virgin most venerable, pray for us.
Virgin most renowned, pray for us.
Virgin most powerful, pray for us.
Virgin most merciful, pray for us.
Virgin most faithful, pray for us.
Mirror of justice, pray for us.
Seat of wisdom, pray for us.
Cause of our joy, pray for us.
Spiritual vessel, pray for us.
Singular vessel of devotion, pray for us.
Mystical rose, pray for us.
Tower of David, pray for us.
Tower of ivory, pray for us.
House of gold, pray for us.
Ark of the Covenant, pray for us.
Gate of heaven, pray for us.
Morning star, pray for us.
Health of the sick, pray for us.
Refuge of sinners, pray for us.
Comforter of the afflicted, pray for us.
Help of Christians, pray for us.
Queen of angels, pray for us.
Queen of patriarchs, pray for us.
Queen of prophets, pray for us.
Queen of apostles, pray for us.
Queen of martyrs, pray for us.
Queen of confessors, pray for us.
Queen of virgins, pray for us.
Queen of all Saints, pray for us.
Queen conceived without Original Sin, pray for us.
Queen assumed into Heaven, pray for us.
Queen of the Most Holy Rosary, pray for us.
Queen of Peace, pray for us.
Queen of the Church, pray for us.

Lamb of God, You take away the sins of the world; spare us O Lord!
Lamb of God, You take away the sins of the world; graciously hear us, O Lord!
Lamb of God, You take away the sins of the world; have mercy on us.
Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

 Let us pray. Grant, we ask You, Lord, that we, your servants, may enjoy lasting health of mind and body, and by the glorious intercession of the Blessed Mary, ever Virgin, be delivered from present sorrow and enter into the joy of eternal happiness. Through Christ our Lord. R/ Amen

At these killings the crowd was usually out for entertainment jeering and shouting insults and making a great noise. But as the sisters were led to the guillotine the crowd fell utterly silent and still. Sr Clotilde thanked the soldiers, calling it the most beautiful day of their lives. They were not allowed any religious symbols, but she had hidden a crucifix on her person, and when she reached the guillotine, she threw it out into the crowd.

Two hundred years later, at a service commemorating the bicentenary of their death, the family of Sr Clotilde brought this crucifix to the Ursulines and asked them to keep it in the convent chapel at Valenciennes in memory of the martyred sisters.

Love,
Matthew

Sep 2 – The September Massacres & The Authority of Jesus Christ

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joachimkenneyop
-by Br Joachim Kenney, OP

“For with authority and power He commands the unclean spirits, and they come out” (Luke 4:36). Jesus stupefies the people of Capernaum in the Gospel today by the authority with which He speaks, an authority that even drives out demons by a simple command. It’s interesting to consider that the response of the people to Jesus’ authority was one of wonder and respect. It’s questionable whether He would get the same response today.

Our reaction to authority is often one of opposition. The reluctance to accept authority has long been embedded deep in man’s soul.

However, in the last few hundred years with the advent of liberalism and its stress on individual autonomy, this reluctance has come to be embraced by society at large as something good.

A cruel and bloody manifestation of this occurred on this day in 1792 in Paris when over 200 Catholic priests were executed in the course of the September Massacres of the French Revolution.

While there are not any executions of clergy going on in the West today, people, even many of those professing to be Catholic, still ignore the authority of the teachings of Christ’s Church.

When they think of the Church, they often think of an institution seeking to control the lives of its members by imposing lots of arbitrary rules on them. “Why doesn’t the Church mind its own business?” they ask. Docility can be fostered, I think, by getting an accurate understanding of the nature of authority.  (Ed. note:  it is this editor’s oh so humble opinion, the crowds recognized the Lord’s authority due to His holiness of life, not merely to his powers over demons, or other objects.  We are all aware of those who possess great power and wealth.  However, our obeisance, not withstanding sycophants, is given only to those who blow us away with their holiness of life.)

The basis of God’s authority – and hence of the Church to whom He has delegated this authority – is that He created the universe and sustains it in existence at every moment.  (If God stopped thinking about creation, it would vanish, classical catechesis goes.)

All things participate in His existence. He is the source of all and has made each thing, including human nature, according to some plan or idea that He has of that thing. “In wisdom you have made them all,” the Psalm 104:24 says.

God has instilled a marvelous order in creation, and He knows every one of His creatures better and more intimately than we know ourselves.

Just as an ENGINEER 🙂 can explain how to use a design of his in a way that will achieve the purpose for which he made it, so in a far more magnificent way, God explains to man through the teaching of the Church how to achieve the purpose for which man is made – everlasting happiness with God in heaven.

It is out of concern for the flourishing of her children that the Church teaches us to avoid sin and grow in virtue. The power of Christ’s grace, dispensed through the sacraments that He instituted, makes this possible. Christ vested the Church with His authority. It is only by entrusting ourselves to her care that our struggles with our own demons can be won.”

AMEN!!!!!!

Love,
Matthew

Sep 2 – Bl John Francis Burte’ & Companions, (d. 1792-1794), Franciscan Priests & Martyrs of the French Revolution

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-massacre at the Salpetriere , September 3, 1792.

Practically every page in the history of the French Revolution is stained with blood. What is known in history as the Carmelite Massacre of 1792, added nearly 200 victims to this noble company of martyrs. They were all priests, secular and religious, who refused to take the schismatic oath, and had been imprisoned in the church attached to the Carmelite monastery in Paris. Among these priests were a Conventual, a Capuchin, and a member of the Third Order Regular.  These priests were victims of the French Revolution.

Though their martyrdom spans a period of several years, they stand together in the Church’s memory because they all gave their lives for the same principle. The Civil Constitution of the Clergy (1791) required all priests to take an oath which amounted to a denial of the faith. Each of these men refused and was executed.

John Francis Burte was born in the town of Rambervillers in Lorraine. At the age of 16 he joined the Franciscans at Nancy and there he also pronounced his solemn vows. In due time he was ordained a priest and for some time taught theology to the younger members of the order. He was at one time also superior of his convent.

After Pope Clement XIV, formerly a Conventual friar, had ordered the merging of the province of the Franciscans, to which John Francis belonged, with the Conventuals, Father John Francis was placed in charge of the large convent in Paris and encouraged his brethren to practice strict observance of the rule. His zeal for souls was outstanding, and he zealously guarded the rights of the Church in this troubled period of history.

When the French Revolution broke out, he was reported for permitting his priests to exercise their functions after they refused to take the infamous oath required by the government, and which was a virtual denial of their Faith. He was arrested and held captive with other priests in the convent of the Carmelites. His constancy in refusing to take the sacrilegious oath won for him a cruel martyrdom on September 2, 1792.

Acquiring a reputation as an excellent preacher, confessor and instructor of clerics, Apollinaris of Posat was preparing to go East as a missionary.  He was in Paris studying Oriental languages when the French Revolution began. Refusing the oath, he was swiftly arrested and detained in the Carmelite convent. Born John James Morel before his entrance into religion, he was born near Friboug in Switzerland in 1739, and received his education from the Jesuits. In 1762 he joined the Capuchins in Zug and before long became a prominent preacher, a much-sought confessor, and an eminent instructor of the young clerics of the order.  He impressed on their minds the truth that piety and learning are the two eyes of a priest, and humility was a dominating virtue in his life.  He suffered a cruel martyrdom on September 2, 1792.

Severin Girault, a member of the Third Order Regular, was a chaplain for a group of sisters in Paris. Imprisoned with the others, he was the first to die in the slaughter at the convent, a priest of the Third Order Regular, formerly George Girault, his undaunted courage merited the grace to be numbered among these martyrs of Christ. He was born at Rouen in Normandy, and early in life joined the Third Order Regular of St. Francis. Because of his eminent mental gifts he was chosen a superior of his order. In the exercise of his priestly duties he displayed marked zeal for souls, and as chaplain of the convent of St. Elizabeth in Paris he was a prudent director in the ways of religious perfection.

He was also summoned to take the civil oath, and upon his refusal to do this he was seized and confined in the Carmelite convent where so many other confessors of Christ were being detained. On September 2, while he was saying his Office in the convent garden, the raving assassins made him the first victim of their cruel slaughter.

These three members of the Franciscan Order, together with 182 other servants of God who suffered martyrdom at this time, were solemnly beatified by Pope Pius XI, and the Franciscan Order was granted permission to celebrate their feast annually with an Office and special Mass.

These three plus 182 others—including several bishops and many religious and diocesan priests—were massacred at the Carmelite house in Paris on September 2, 1792. They were beatified in 1926.John Baptist Triquerie, born in 1737, entered the Conventual Franciscans. He was chaplain and confessor of Poor Clare monasteries in three cities before he was arrested for refusing to take the oath. He and 13 diocesan priests were guillotined in Laval on January 21, 1794. He was beatified in 1955.

“Liberty, Equality, Fraternity” was the motto of the French Revolution. If individuals have “inalienable rights,” as the Declaration of Independence states, these must come not from the agreement of society (which can be very fragile/mutable/mercurial/fickle/ephemeral/illusory) but directly from God, which the Declaration also declares with certitude and religious conviction to be the case for the United States.  At least we started out that way.

“The upheaval which occurred in France toward the close of the 18th century wrought havoc in all things sacred and profane and vented its fury against the Church and her ministers. Unscrupulous men came to power who concealed their hatred for the Church under the deceptive guise of philosophy…. It seemed that the times of the early persecutions had returned. The Church, spotless bride of Christ, became resplendent with bright new crowns of martyrdom” (Acts of Martyrdom).

Love,
Matthew

Sep 2-3: Blessed John du Lau & Companions, (d. 1792) – Martyrs of September…of Paris…of Carmes

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The Benedictines and Carmelites in some places in the USA, and of course in England and France, liturgically remember the September Martyrs, also called the Paris Martyrs; you will also see the memorial listed as “Blessed John du Lau and companions” after the Archbishop of Arles, the highest ranking prelate among the 191 martyrs. The Benedictine nuns of Stanbrook Abbey are connected with the Carmelite nuns and retain some of the relics. Historians tells us that about 1500 clergy and religious were killed in 1792. And this act of martyrdom inspired the writing of Georeges Bernanos’s “Dialogues of the Carmelites” and the famous opera of Francis Poulenc, by the same name.

The French “virtue” of liberty was not applied to the Church. In fact, quite the opposite. Just a few years after the French Revolution there was a purge of high and low clergy, religious and laity. The killing of the clerics happened because the republican government seized control of the Church, a matter that was (and, remains so today) unacceptable to Catholic ecclesiology. As the state has its duty and responsibility for civic order and leadership, the Church’s mandate is found in sacred Scripture, Tradition and the Magisterium and not in positive law; in short all things pertaining to the salvation of souls. Matters of state are not the same for the Church and vice versa unless these matters concern the moral law. This, however, was not the reigning ideology. The Republicans passed legislation that rejected the authority of the Church and it wanted the bishops and priests to uphold the new laws giving the state control over the Church. Something similar had with the Oath of Supremacy in England. Clergyman and religious weren’t the only one to offer their lives as a gift to the Lord. the laity lost their lives too, aristocrats and peasant alike. Refusing to take the oath got you the label: “non-jurors.”

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Some of the 191 were killed in cold blood, others were asked a question and depending on how they answered determined if they lived or died. No mental reservation was kept when it came to following the wisdom of the Church or the wisdom of man.

One observer noted that common among those put to death was that all faced death in a happy manner as one who would’ve gone to a wedding. Indeed, the wedding feast the martyrs were going to was the Wedding Feast of the Lamb (see the Book of Revelation).

In 1790, the revolutionary government of France enacted a law denying Papal authority over the Church in France. The French clergy were required to swear an oath to uphold this law and submit to the Republic,the penalty for refusing to take the oath was deportation. Many priests and religious took the oath but a sizable minority opposed it. The revolutionary leaders’ primary target was the aristocracy, but by 1792, their attention turned to the Church, especially the non-jurors within it. In August, in the name of Liberty, Equality and Fraternity, those who had refused the oath were rounded up and imprisoned in Parisian monasteries, emptied for that purpose.

Blessed John du Lau, archbishop of Arles, was born on October 30, 1738 at the Château de la Côte at Biras in the Dordogne, in the diocese of Périgueux, of an aristocratic family which had fed many members into the higher ranks of the clergy. His father was Armand du Lau, seigneur de La Coste and his mother Françoise de Salleton. Refusing to take the oath to the civil constitution, he had been brought to Paris and cast into the prison of the Cannes, formerly a Carmelite monastery, awaiting deportation, as were the rest.

Blessed Pierre-Louis de la Rochefoucauld, Bishop of Saintes and a vigorous antagonist of Jansenism, and his brother, Francois-Joseph de la Rochefoucauld, Bishop of Beauvais, were sons of Jean de La Rochefoucauld, lord of Maumont, Magnac, and other places, knight of the military orders of Notre-Dame du Mont-Carmel and St-Lazarre de Jérusalem, and Marguerite des Escots. Both brothers were imprisoned.

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In September “Vigilance Committees” were set up and mobs sent to the make-shift prisons. On 2nd September a season of bloodshed and slaughter began. The inmates were cut-down in cold blood. All of the prisoners, even the old and disabled, were put to the sword. The executions at the old Carmelite monastery in Paris were recorded.

Among the martyrs was Blessed Alexander Lenfant, a Jesuit. Just a few minutes before he died, he had been hearing the confession of a fellow priest. Both were killed moments later. The rioters then went to the Carmelite church which was also being used as a prison.

The mob called out, “Archbishop of Arles!” Archbishop John du Lau of Arles (Jean-Marie du Lau d’Alleman) was praying in the chapel. When summoned, he came out and he said, “I am he whom you seek.” Thereupon, they cracked his skull, stabbed him and trampled him underfoot. Then the leader set up a “tribunal” before which the imprisoned were herded and commanded to take the oath. All refused; so, as they passed down the stairway, they were hacked to pieces by the murderers.

The bishop of Beauvais had earlier been wounded in the leg. When summoned, he answered, “I do not refuse to die with the others, but I cannot walk. I beg you to have the kindness to carry me where you wish me to go.” For a moment, his courtesy silenced the assassins. But, when he, too, refused the oath, he was killed like the rest.

On September 3, the same mob went to the Lazarist (Vincentian) seminary. It was also a temporary prison, with ninety priests and religious. Only four escaped death.  According to Nicolas-Edme Restif de la Bretonne, “The number of active killers who took part in the September massacres was only about one hundred and fifty. The rest of Paris looked on in fear or approval, or stayed behind closed shutters.”

Earl Gower, a British diplomat, wrote in his dispatches: “These unfortunate people fell victims to the fury of the enraged populace and were massacred with circumstances of barbarity too shocking to describe. The mob went afterwards to the prison of the Abbaye, and having demanded of the jailors a list of the prisoners they put aside such as were confined only for debt, and pulled to pieces most of the others. The same cruelties were committed during the night and continue this morning in all the other prisons of the town. When they have satiated their vengeance, which is principally directed against the refractory Priests,… it is to be hoped the tumult will subside, but as the multitude are perfectly masters, everything is to be dreaded.”

The massacres continued for most of the year. By the end of September over 200 clergy had been killed and by the end of 1792 the total was 1500. One-hundred and ninety-one September martyrs were beatified by Pope Pius XI in 1926. Long after the names of their blood-thirsty executioners have been forgotten, their heroism in the defense of the Papacy and the Faith will be remembered:

Blessed Jean-Marie du Lau d’Alleman, Archbishop of Arles
Blessed Ambroise-Augustin Chevreux
Blessed Andé Angar
Blessed André Grasset de Saint-Sauveur
Blessed André-Abel Alricy
Blessed Anne-Alexandre-Charles-Marie Lanfant
Blessed Antoine-Charles-Octavien du Bouzet
Blessed Antoine-Mathieu-Augustin Nogier
Blessed Apollinaris of Posat
Blessed Armand de Foucauld de Pontbriand
Blessed Armand-Anne-Auguste-Antonin-Sicaire Chapt de Rastignac
Blessed August-Dénis Nezel
Blessed Bernard-François de Cucsac
Blessed Bertrand-Antoine de Caupenne
Blessed Charles Carnus
Blessed Charles-François le Gué
Blessed Charles-Jéremie Bérauld du Pérou
Blessed Charles-Louis Hurtrel
Blessed Charles-Regis-Mathieu de la Calmette de Valfons (Count of Valfons)
Blessed Charles-Victor Véret
Blessed Claude Bochot
Blessed Claude Cayx-Dumas
Blessed Claude Chaudet
Blessed Claude Colin
Blessed Claude Fontaine
Blessed Claude Ponse
Blessed Claude Rousseau
Blessed Claude-Antoine-Raoul Laporte
Blessed Claude-François Gagnières des Granges
Blessed Apollinaris of Posat
Blessed Claude-Louis Marmotant de Savigny
Blessed Claude-Silvain-Raphaël Mayneaud de Bizefranc
Blessed Daniel-Louis André Des Pommerayes
Blessed Denis-Claude Duval
Blessed Éloy Herque du Roule
Blessed Étienne-François-Dieudonné de Ravinel
Blessed Étienne-Michel Gillet
Blessed Eustache Félix
Blessed François Balmain
Blessed François Dardan
Blessed François Dumasrambaud de Calandelle
Blessed François Lefranc
Blessed François Varheilhe-Duteil
Blessed François-César Londiveau
Blessed François-Hyacinthe lé Livec de Trésurin
Blessed François-Joseph de la Rochefoucald-Maumont, Bishop of Beauvais
Blessed François-Joseph Monnier
Blessed François-Joseph Pey
Blessed François-Louis Hébert
Blessed François-Louis Méallet de Fargues
Blessed François-Urbain Salins de Niart
Blessed Gabriel Desprez de Roche
Blessed Gaspard-Claude Maignien
Blessed Georges Girault
Blessed Georges-Jérôme Giroust
Blessed Gilbert-Jean Fautrel
Blessed Gilles-Louis-Symphorien Lanchon
Blessed Guillaume-Antoine Delfaut
Blessed Guillaume-Nicolas-Louis Leclerq (Salomon), a lay Brother
Blessed Henri-August Luzeau de la Mulonnière
Blessed Henri-Hippolyte Ermès
Blessed Henri-Jean Milet
Blessed Jacques de la Lande
Blessed Jacques Dufour
Blessed Jacques Friteyre-Durvé
Blessed Jacques-Alexandre Menuret
Blessed Jacques-Augustin Robert de Lézardières
Blessed Jacques-Étienne-Philippe Hourrier
Blessed Jacques-François de Lubersac
Blessed Jacques-Gabriel Galais
Blessed Jacques-Jean Lemeunier
Blessed Jacques-Joseph Le jardinier desLandes
Blessed Jacques-Jules Bonnaud
Blessed Jacques-Léonor Rabé
Blessed Jacques-Louis Schmid
Blessed Jean Charton de Millou
Blessed Jean Goizet
Blessed Jean Lacan
Blessed Jean Lemaître
Blessed Jean-André Capeau
Blessed Jean-Antoine Guilleminet
Blessed Jean-Antoine Savine
Blessed Jean-Antoine Seconds
Blessed Jean-Antoine-Barnabé Séguin
Blessed Jean-Antoine-Hyacinthe Boucharenc de Chaumeils
Blessed Jean-Antoine-Joseph de Villette
Blessed Jean-Baptiste Bottex
Blessed Jean-Baptiste Jannin
Blessed Jean-Baptiste Nativelle
Blessed Jean-Baptiste-Claude Aubert
Blessed Jean-Baptiste-Marie Tessier
Blessed Jean-Baptiste-Michel Pontus
Blessed Jean-Charles Caron
Blessed Jean-Charles Legrand
Blessed Jean-Charles-Marie Bernard du Cornillet
Blessed Jean-François Bonnel de Pradal
Blessed Jean-François Bousquet
Blessed Jean-François Burté
Blessed Jean-François-Marie Benoît-Vourlat
Blessed Jean-Henri Gruyer
Blessed Jean-Henri-Louis-Michel Samson
Blessed Jean-Joseph de Lavèze-Bellay
Blessed Jean-Joseph Rateau
Blessed Jean-Louis Guyard de Saint-Clair
Blessed Jean-Michel Philippot
Blessed Jean-Philippe Marchand
Blessed Jean-Pierre Bangue
Blessed Jean-Pierre Duval
Blessed Jean-Pierre Le Laisant
Blessed Jean-Pierre Simon
Blessed Jean-Robert Quéneau
Blessed Jean-Thomas Leroy
Blessed Joseph Bécavin
Blessed Joseph Falcoz
Blessed Joseph-Louis Oviefre
Blessed Joseph-Marie Gros
Blessed Joseph-Thomas Pazery de Thorame
Blessed Jules-Honoré-Cyprien Pazery de Thorame
Blessed Julien le Laisant
Blessed Julien Poulain Delaunay
Blessed Julien-François Hédouin
Blessed Laurent
Blessed Louis Barreau de La Touche
Blessed Louis le Danois
Blessed Louis Longuet
Blessed Louis Mauduit
Blessed Louis-Alexis-Mathias Boubert
Blessed Louis-Benjamin Hurtrel
Blessed Louis-François Rigot
Blessed Louis-François-André Barret
Blessed Louis-Jean-Mathieu Lanier
Blessed Louis-Joseph François
Blessed Louis-Laurent Gaultier
Blessed Louis-Remi Benoist
Blessed Louis-Remi-Nicolas Benoist
>Blessed Loup Thomas-Bonnotte
Blessed Marc-Louis Royer
Blessed Marie-François Mouffle
Blessed Martin-François-Alexis Loublier
Blessed Mathurin-Nicolas de la VilleCrohain le Bous de Villeneuve
Blessed Mathurin-Victoir Deruelle
Blessed Michel Leber
Blessed Michel-André-Sylvestre Binard
Blessed Michel-François de laGardette
Blessed Nicolas Bize
Blessed Nicolas Clairet
Blessed Nicolas Colin
Blessed Nicolas Gaudreau
Blessed Nicolas-Claude Roussel
Blessed Nicolas-Marie Verron
Blessed Olivier Lefebvre
Blessed Philibert Fougères
Blessed Pierre Bonzé
Blessed Pierre Brisquet
Blessed Pierre Brisse
Blessed Pierre Gauguin
Blessed Pierre Landry
Blessed Pierre Ploquin
Blessed Pierre Saint-James
Blessed Pierre-Claude Pottier
Blessed Pierre-Florent Leclercq
Blessed Pierre-François Hénocq
Blessed Pierre-François Pazery de Thorames
Blessed Pierre-Jacques de Turmenyes
Blessed Pierre-Jacques-Marie Vitalis
Blessed Pierre-Jean Garrigues
Blessed Pierre-Louis de la Rochefoucauld-Bayers, Bishop of Saintes
Blessed Pierre-Louis Gervais
Blessed Pierre-Louis Joret
Blessed Pierre-Louis-Joseph Verrier
Blessed Pierre-Michel Guérin
Blessed Pierre-Michel Guérin du Rocher
Blessed Pierre-Nicolas Psalmon
Blessed Pierre-Paul Balzac
Blessed Pierre-Robert Regnet
Blessed René Nativelle
Blessed René-Joseph Urvoy
Blessed René-Julien Massey
Blessed René-Marie Andrieux
Blessed René-Nicolas Poret
Blessed Robert le Bis
Blessed Robert-François Guérin du Rocher
Blessed Saintin Huré
Blessed Sébastien Desbrielles
Blessed Thomas-Jean Montsaint
Blessed Thomas-Nicolas Dubray
Blessed Thomas-René Dubuisson
Blessed Urbain Lefebvre
Blessed Vincent Abraham
Blessed Vincent-Joseph le Rousseau de Rosencoat
Blessed Yves-André Guillon de Keranrun
Blessed Yves-Jean-Pierre Rey de Kervisic

abbayeprisonstgermain

-The Massacre at the Abbaye Prison near St. Germain des Pres, engraved by Reinier Vinkeles and Daniel Vrydag

massacreofpriests

-The Massacre of the Priests in September 1792 by H. de la Charlerie

SeptemberMassacres

All you Holy Martyrs of God, pray for us!
Queen of Martyrs, pray for us!

Love,
Matthew