215th Birthday of Blessed Basil Moreau

Education is the art of helping young people to completeness; for the Christian, this mean education is helping a young person to be more like Christ, the model of all Christians.
–from Blessed Moreau’s Christian Education 3

Our Founder - Blessed Basil Moreau - Beatification

Today is the 215th Birthday ofBasile-Antoine Marie Moreau (Basil Anthony Marie Moreau in English). He was born at the end of the French Revolution in Laigne-en-Belin, in the diocese of Le Mans, France, on February 11, 1799. Moreau was greatly impacted by the French Revolution; he was so moved by the spiritual and educational void that he became a priest and seminary professor. Then the Holy Spirit inspired him to organize a band of teaching priests to travel the devastated French countryside to teach and administer the Sacraments. Fr. Moreau would form the Congregation of Holy Cross by joining his “auxiliary priests” with the Brothers of St. Joseph. His new religious community eventually grew to include sisters. Moreau modeled his family after the Holy Family.

Fr. Moreau would eventually send members of his community out into the world as missionaries to countries such as Algeria, Bangladesh, Canada and the United States establishing parishes and schools. These institutions would follow Moreau’s Christian education model of educating both the mind and the heart of the students and parishioners of all ages. Today,there are more than 1,500 members of the Congregation of Holy Cross serving in 16 countries on five continents. You can learn more about Holy Cross’ global community of parishes, missions and educational institutions by visiting the website of theCongregation of Holy Cross‘ Superior General in Rome.

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Fr. Moreau died in Le Mans on January 20, 1873. He was beatified, by order of Pope Benedict XVI, on September 15, 2007, the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows, in Le Mans, France. Blessed Moreau remains an inspiration to men and women who live his vision of bringing hope to others. Work continues today on his cause for sainthood.

The Congregation of Holy Cross is in the process of establishing an international shrine in honor ofBlessed Moreau at the Church of Notre-Dame de Sainte-Croix in Le Mans, France. The church was built under the direction of Fr. Moreau to serve as the Congregation’s spiritual home. Blessed Moreau is buried here. Pilgrims visit to pray at his tomb and to learn more about the origins of Holy Cross. You can follow the progress of the Shrine on Facebook atwww.facebook.com/moreaucsc.

“Basil Moreau: Essential Writings,”a newa comprehensive, one-volume publication ofBlessed Moreau’s writings, sermons, circular letters and spiritual exercises, will be published and available for sale through Ave Maria Press beginning April 2014. You can preorder it today on Ave Maria’s website.

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