Blessed Daniel Brottier2008

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Fr. Daniel Brottier, CSSp was a Roman Catholic priest of the Spiritan missionary Congregation. He laboured in Senegal and later founded orphanages in France. Daniel Brottier was declared "Blessed" by …

Fr. Daniel Brottier, CSSp was a Roman Catholic priest of the Spiritan missionary Congregation. He laboured in Senegal and later founded orphanages in France. Daniel Brottier was declared "Blessed" by our Holy Father in Rome on November 25th, 1984.

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  • 1. Blessed Daniel Brottier September 7th 1876 February 28th 1936
  • 2. …born Ferte St. Cyr, a small village in the Diocese of Blois in central France
  • 3. Determined to be a missionary and a priest, Daniel entered the senior seminary in 1893. • Parents Jean and Bertha were hardworking country folk. • Young Daniel Jules Alexis grew up in an ordinary but simple and loving environment.
  • 4. Young Daniel at the seminary
  • 5. Military Service According to French law, Daniel had to perform military service while still a seminarian at Blois.
  • 6. Ordination • Ordained for diocesan priesthood, October 22nd, 1899 • Assigned by his bishop to teach at the college of Pontlevoy for three years.
  • 7. Brottier Joins the Spiritans 1902 He applied for admission to the Congregation of the Holy Ghost and the Immaculate Heart of Mary and began his novitiate at Orly, near Paris The decision was not taken without pain. He wrote to his future novice master, the saintly Father Genoud, on June 6th 1902- “I did not think it would be so hard to leave the world.When one measures it against the sacrifices other people have to make, it seems little or nothing, but when it touches you directly, it is a very different matter. Yet. I am consoled that in the depth of my being, I experience the same enthusiasm that moved me during my retreat last year”.
  • 8. A Religious and a Missionary Letter to Superior General, written in September 1903, Brottier says: “I do not wish to appear presumptuous, but if you have a danger-post to fill where life itself is at risk, I say in all simplicity, I’m ready.”
  • 9. In Senegal • Arrival in Dakar – Nov. 26th, 1903 Bishop Jalabert
  • 10. Brottier’s health suffers in Africa June 1911 Brottier returns to Paris. He is not sure whether or not his health will permit a return to his beloved Senegal. “I have promised to leave all to Providence and take no steps for or against. That is the only way for a religious to do his duty.”
  • 11. The African Memorial Cathedral • 1911-1923 Brottier raises funds in France for a new cathedral in Dakar. • 1936 the cathedral is consecrated.
  • 12. At night, he buried the dead; in the day, he rescued World War I and succoured the wounded, even under enemy fire. His charity and courage were equalled only by his spirit of humility and self-denial. He was untiring in his labour, contemptuous of danger, calm, recollected, utterly dedicated. This may seem high praise. It is not ours, but the tribute paid him by soldiers and officers alike, some of whom were, to say the least, rather anti-clerical. It was these who recommended him for the highest rewards of the French State, the Legion of Honour and the Croix de Guerre. Between 1916 and 1918, he was six times mentioned in dispatches’
  • 13. The National Union of Growth of Union of Ex-Servicemen 2,000,000 Ex-Servicemen 1,800,000 In 1917, before 1,600,000 demobilisation began, he 1,400,000 had already enlisted 1,200,000 8,000 members. At 1,000,000 demobilisation 160,000. Members 800,000 Eventually, this was to 600,000 rise to 2 million 400,000 200,000 0 1917 1918 Maximum
  • 14. African Cathedral: Phase II Brottier continues to raise money for the cathedral in Dakar. Brottier’s special devotion to St. Teresa “the little flower.” January 12th , 1920, “L’Afrique” is shipwrecked with the loss of 463 people, among them Brottier’s friend, Bishop Jalabert. A time of great loss and trial for Brottier.
  • 15. The Auteuil Project In 1923, Cardinal Dubois, Archbishop of Paris, with the approval of the Superior- General of the Holy Ghost Fathers, Archbishop Le Roy, appointed Father Brottier as Rector of the Orphanage at Auteuil. At once, he visited the badly-lit, badly heated, badly equipped buildings and workshops which cried out silently to him a story of neglect, decay and inefficient “make-do”. He saw, he pictured what might be and in his mind laid his plans silently He had the space. He would give to Auteuil- solid buildings, airy and well-lit, suitably furnished, creating an atmosphere of joy and stability; class-rooms too, and well-equipped workshops which would be hives of industry, well-equipped to encourage professional skill and efficiency and hope of a decent livelihood to follow. He was not just one man battling with adversity, but many men in one; ruler, administrator, diplomat, financier, and yet serene, peaceful, patient and charitable, inspiring confidence and affection.
  • 16. 1400 The Growth of Auteuil 1200 1923 -1936 1000 More 800 orphanages Orphans 600 400 are 200 associated 0 1923 with Auteuil 1936
  • 17. A Basilica to the Little Flower The following year, 1924, the foundation-stone was laid. In 1930 the basilica was opened. The most distinguished architects and artists, the most skilled craftsmen co-operated. Seven million francs had been collected. It was a triumph of faith! It was to become a centre of devotion to Saint Teresa of Lisieux, a place of pilgrimage for Paris and for France.
  • 18. The Auteuil Project
  • 19. The Auteuil Project
  • 20. The Auteuil Project
  • 21. The Auteuil Project
  • 22. The Auteuil Project
  • 23. The Auteuil Project
  • 24. “Heaven’s Businessman” His methods were unusually modern for those days: advertisements in the Paris Underground, gala performances at the massive Trocadero Theatre, which had to be repeated twice more to satisfy all who sought to attend, a concert of religious music at the Madeleine Church, a “Golden Book,” articles in the press of the capital, talks, flag-days; even in our day, few promoters would be as imaginative. He was indeed “Heaven’s businessman” and it did not go to his head! Prayer kept him humble and self-forgetting in the midst of success.
  • 25. Brottier’s Death About 4:15 in the morning of 28th February, he gave three profound sighs and - Daniel Brottier, intrepid missionary, builder of churches, legendary army chaplain and priestly father of 1400 ophans was with God
  • 26. O GOD, you filled the heart of your servant Daniel with a great spirit of charity. You drove him forward into doing great things, to relieve the unhappiness of many of your children. He worked, we know, for your glory as well as the well being of those he served. Grant us now, we ask you the gift of living that same life of generosity and caring charity to help our fellow brothers and sisters in distress. And we pray you to honour your servant, Daniel, here on earth by granting us the graces which we so much need. Amen.
  • 27. The End Laval Media 2002 (Revised 2005) Produced by Paul McAuley, CSSp Text and B & W Photos from: Blessed Daniel Brottier: Friend of Youth by Gerald Fitzgerald, CSSp Colour Photos by Paul McAuley, CSSp