Jean–Jacques Olier


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founder of the Society and Seminary of Saint-Sulpice (q.v.). Threatened with the loss of his sight, on a pilgrimage to Loreto he was cured and converted to a deeply religious life. Ordained in 1633, he established a seminary at Vaugirard; when he became parish priest of Saint-Sulpice in Paris in 1642, he transferred the seminary there. He divided his parish into eight districts, with a priest in charge of each; schools, catechism classes, homes for women, and charitable organizations were established. He built up a community of secular priests, pursuing a common aim, but without religious vows. His spiritual writings are centred on the need for self-abasement, turning from a devotion to Christ's humanity to His divinity.

Subjects: Christianity.

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