University of Notre Dame

The Story of Notre Dame
Brother Aidan's Extracts

BROTHERS (Bishop Bouvier's Letter)

"Basil Anthony Moreau, honorary canon, and former professor of theology in our diocesan seminary, has with the consent of the present bishop, established a house near the city of Mans, and has there assembled certain persons burning with love of souls, poverty and obedience; who follow the community life under his direction, and are always ready to announce the Wisdom of God, to hear confessions, to conduct retreats, etc. They are called Auxiliary Priests and are already 15 in number. They live on voluntary offerings and on the profit accruing from the board and tuition of one hundred pupils.

"As the Brothers of the Christian Doctrine do not undertake the charge of establiishments unless they can live at least three together and receive an annual salary of 600 francs each, they cannot be procured for schools in the country parishes and the snmall towns. A pious pastor of Ruille, Joseph F. Dujarie, about the year 1820 gathered into his presbytery a number of virtuous and good men, kept them at his own expense, taught them, and prepared themn to become primary teachers for the parishes in which the services of the Christian Brothers were unattainable. Thus were founded the Brothers of St. Joseph.

"The present Bishop of Mans, seeing that the novitiate of these Brothers could not be suitably maintained in the country district, took measures to transfer them to the city. With the consent of the founder who was still alive, though weighed down with infirmities, he gave to the Brothers as superior the aforenamed Fr. Moreau. The latter, having nothing in view but the good of religion, assumed the heavy burden and united the novitiate to the Auxiliary Priests. Thus there are now in the same house the Auxiliary Priests, the pupils, the novice Brothers, and the teachers. This new institute already numbers 80 persons, scattered through 39 establishments and 45 novices. Yesterday three Brothers under the direction of one of the priests set out to build up an establishment in Algeria, Africa, and others will soon be dispatched to the diocese of Vincennes in America." 1840

‹— Brother Aidan's Extracts —›