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Jesuit Conference Bringing St. Jean de Brébeuf Relic Tour to St. Louis February 25

by Maggie Rotermund
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Maggie Rotermund
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Saint Louis University’s Catholic Studies Program Will Host Hour of Veneration

Members of the Jesuit Conference of Canada and the United States are hitting the road during the Lenten season, bringing the relics of St. Jean de Brébeuf to cities across Canada and the United States. The tour will highlight the story of the French-born missionary and martyr who became the first Jesuit missionary in present-day Canada in 1626.

The tour stops in St. Louis on Sunday, Feb. 25, at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis. Saint Louis University’s Catholic Studies program hosts an hour of veneration during the stop.

Catholic Studies

A student prays during the blessing celebration for SLU's Catholic Studies Center Chapel. SLU file photo.

“The students at Catholic Studies wanted to commit to doing an hour of veneration together so that other members of the SLU community feel welcome to come then too,” said Matthew Baugh, S.J., program director for Catholic Studies.

Baugh said the visit has special meaning for him because his Jesuit community in Canada would begin each school year praying at the grave of Brébeuf.

“I’ve prayed many times as a student before his relics,” Baugh said. “So it’s a real joy that I can go with some of my own students to do the same”

St. Jean de Brébeuf was born in France in 1593 and died in Canada in 1649. 

Catholics venerate relics as a tangible sign of faith. Veneration is not the worshipping of objects but an honoring of individuals who lived virtuous lives and were elevated by the Church to sainthood.

“Christians have been venerating the relics of the saints from the very beginning,” Baugh said. “It comes from our lively sense of friendship with them. In prayer, we can talk to them just like we do with our friends on earth. Their example is also a big help to us.”

“It gives me courage to tackle the hard things in my life when I reflect on all that Jean de Brébeuf did,” Baugh said. “He gave his whole life for the Huron people.”

Relic Tour Schedule

The Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis is located at 4431 Lindell Blvd. St. Louis, MO 63108.