Blessed Basil Moreau, Circular letter 153; 1862
Moreau was beatified, by order of Pope Benedict XVI, on September 15, 2007, the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows, in Le Mans, France. Blessed Basile Moreau remains an inspiration to men and women who live his vision of bringing hope to others. Work continues today on his cause for canonization.
Blessed Basile Anthony Moreau, pray for us!
Today Holy Cross is involved in a search for new structures and institutions to guarantee and protect for future generations in our ever-changing world the vitality and the growth of the Congregation with its unique identity. With Blessed Basil Moreau, we share the belief that Holy Cross is “God’s work” and continues to be a gift to the Church and to society.
This is the cover of “Basil Moreau: Essential Writings.” Blessed Basil Moreau founded the religious order of the Congregation of Holy Cross. (CNS photo | courtesy Diocese of Colorado Springs)
“The inauguration of the International Shrine of Blessed Basile Moreau is a great moment for the entire family of Holy Cross, including our lay collaborators and the men and women we serve in our schools, parishes, and social ministries,” said Fr. Richard V. Warner, C.S.C., Superior General of the Congregation of Holy Cross. “It is also a great moment for the entire People of God as the shrine will help spread the rich spiritual legacy of our founder, whose holiness of life and service has been recognized by the Church in his beatification.”“The International Shrine of Blessed Basile Moreau aims to be a place of prayer, of welcome, and of evangelization, in service to both the Church in Le Mans and beyond,” said Fr. John DeRiso, C.S.C., first rector of the shrine. “Blessed Basile Moreau has a way to holiness and a way to the Lord to share with us. The Shrine of Basile Moreau, in addition to being a place of peace, also aims to make his way known. It will contribute to the greater glory of God through the sanctification of souls.”Lord God, help us to imitate the virtues of Blessed Basil Moreau, especially his trust in Divine Providence, his confidence in the Cross as our only hope, and his zeal for making God known, loved, and served.A Mass of thanksgiving for the beatification of Blessed Father Basil Moreau, C.S.C., will be celebrated on Wednesday (Oct. 17) at 5:30 p.m. in Old St. Patricks Church (700 West Adams) in Chicago.The feast of Blessed Basil Moreau, C.S.C., founder of the , will be celebrated Friday (Jan. 20) at 5:15 p.m. with a Mass in the University of Notre Dame’s Basilica of the Sacred Heart.The University of Notre Dame’s second celebration of the feast of Blessed Basil Anthony Moreau, the 19th century French churchman who foundedthe Congregation of Holy Cross, will be observed with several events, collectively titled"Holy Cross: Faith in Our Future."Following Lauds at 10:30 a.m. in the church, Br. Joel Giallanza, C.S.C., one of the leadings experts on Moreau and his spirituality, will present a talk: “A Work of Resurrection: the Heritage and Wisdom of Blessed Basile Moreau.”Artist's Narrative:
Blessed Basil Moreau was born during the French Revolution in 1799, the ninth of fourteen children in a poor but pious family. He was ordained a priest at age 22, an exception made for his early ordination because of the need to replace the large number of priests killed during the French Revolution. In fact, much of Fr. Moreau's ministry was spent repairing the damage done by the French Revolution, first by teaching in the seminary and later by preaching popular missions to the laity.
Responding to pastoral needs, Fr. Basil organized the Auxiliary Priests of Le Mans in 1833 to help diocesan clergy with their heavy workload. In 1835, his bishop requested that he take on the direction of the Congregation of the Brothers of St. Joseph, whose founder was ill and no longer able to lead. In 1837 Fr. Moreau united the two orders into one religious institute, the Congregation of Holy Cross.
His feast day is January 20.
Blessed Basile Moreau, the founder of the Congregation of Holy Cross, was born in Laigné-en-Belin, in the Diocese of Le Mans, France, on Feb. 11, 1799. In 1821, he was ordained a priest for the Diocese of LeMans. He later became a seminary professor, teaching philosophy and theology, while enthusiastically continuing to engage in pastoral work. He was known not only as an inspiring professor, but also a man of God who faithfully sought to grow in the image of Christ through prayer, personal asceticism, and service.Warner was born June 10, 1939, in Cleveland, Ohio, in the United States. Educated by the Holy Cross brothers at St. Edward High School in Lakewood, he joined the Congregation and professed Final Vows on August 16, 1962. He was ordained a priest on December 27, 1966. Having completed his theology at the Catholic University of Chile, Warner remained in Chile following Ordination and worked at St. George's College. In 1973, he was apointed steward of the Indiana Province, and in 1979, he was elected Provincial Superior. Following his nine years of service as Provincial, Warner was appointed Counselor to the President at the University of Notre Dame in 1988. The following year, he took on the added responsibility as Director of Campus Ministry at Notre Dame. Over these years, Warner worked for 22 years as the Chairman of the Board of the Homeless Center in South Bend, Indiana. He also worked on the Memorial Health Systems Board, 10 years as a member and seven years as its chair. At the 2004 General Chapter, Warner was appointed to the General Council, and in that role he chaired the Solidarity Commission, which raised money to support the Congregation's ministries in the developing world. He also led the Congregation's efforts to rebuild Haiti following the earthquake. In the 2010 General Chapter, he was elected the 12th Superior General of Holy Cross. Following on the Chapter's decrees, Warner devoted his administration to structural and financial planning, the fruits of which were presented to the 2016 General Chapter. During a time of structural changes, he also called the Congregation to a renewal of its religious life and founding charism. One of his Administration's key projects was the establishment of the International Shrine of Blessed Basile Moreau at the Church of Notre-Dame de Sainte-Croix in Le Mans, France. He also broadened the involvement and participation of all sectors in the Congregation's governance as part of the efforts to create a congregational perspective. His Administration organized three Holy Cross Forums in Rome that brought together young brothers and priests in Holy Cross; many of them went on to participate in the 2016 General Chapter. In 2013-2014, Warner also presided over the renovation of the Holy Cross Generalate in Rome in order to make the Congregation's international headquarters better suited to serve the growing internationalization of Holy Cross.