Beatification Cause of Father Etienne Pernet - Info Flash n°5

Founder of the Little Sisters of the Assumption

Message from the Vice-Postulator 

Following on from leaflet no. 4, the activity of the team has consisted in the distribution of the items we had indicated: 
  • The prayer for the beatification, 
  • A text to accompany each day of the novena, 
  • A leaflet summarising the life of Father Pernet, 
  • A questionnaire, so as to gather together the information on the graces received.
Also, with Father Julio Navarro, Postulator, we had a meeting with Father Fabrice Varangot, Promoter of the Causes of Saints for the Diocese of Paris. 
From that meeting we retained that, in order to advance towards the beatification, it is necessary to prove the permanence of the figure of Father Pernet as a model of sanctity in the life of the Congregation as well as in the circle of families, friends, fraternity, etc....
It involves compiling a file showing that the reputation for sanctity of Father Pernet was never interrupted. 
Hence the importance of communicating to us the graces obtained following prayers and novenas confided to Father Pernet’s intercession even if it is not question, strictly speaking, of a miracle, but of signs – even very small ones – that can be observed in the strength and support that may be observed in the course of the trial, difficulty.
Moreover, it has been suggested that, in order to make the life of Father Pernet known, we make use of the diocesan means of communication: Television (KTO) – Radio (Radio Notre Dame) – Press (Paris Notre Dame).
We are seeking your collaboration for all of that. 
Sister Madeleine, Archivist of the Congregation
In memory of Mother Marie de Jésus for the first anniversary of her death 
My daughters, this day brings us many impressions and, above all, memories. 
The words of human beings, which are more or less the expression of their thought and sentiments, are difficult to explain.
It is astonishing how they are led to exalt or to belittle, according to the disposition of their mind and heart. However, we must not always disdain what we hear, there is something that may come from God in what people think, feel and say. Your Mother passed unnoticed, in a worldly sense, she hated appearing in public, her life wasn’t spent before a large public, she communicated only with the persons Providence had put in contact with her, she never sought to shine. I don’t wish to canonise her, but we can say that she was holy. My own feeling is that she is with the Good Lord and I apply these words of Our Lord to her: ’All that the Father gives me will come to me: and whoever comes to me I will not turn away.’ [Jn 6:37].
Your Mother bore a rare mark of Providence; she was led through life in such a way that one could say that God had taken hold of her from her earliest years. You have noticed her abandonment to the will of God and her absolute confidence in Him. 
In looking at the divine action in her, we can say in all truth: God the Father gave her to His Son. According as she advanced in life, she rose up, not through pride, but to come closer to God and to spread the reign of God. She had a preference for the poor and those who were considered unimportant.
Your Mother was the person, of all those whom I have ever met, who was most at the mercy of the Good Lord. My wish for you is that you be like her, that you have her simplicity, uprightness, frankness and generosity with a view to the glory of God and the fruitfulness of the apostolate of the Little Sister. In going to Our Lord she was entirely detached from herself. Now that she is at rest in the peace and fullness of the joy that God gives her, may she obtain for you to be what she has been and that these words of Our Lord may also be applied to you: ’The one whom my Father has given to me will come to me and will not be cast out.’ 
Rejoice in the reward that she is enjoying; ask her to help you to follow in her footsteps. She is a Mother, she has a Mother’s heart. She sees all of you and will obtain for you that this work will develop so as to glorify God and save souls, above all those of the poor creatures who are deprived of the gifts of fortune and condemned to suffering, and it is the largest number. 
Father Etienne Pernet
18 September 1884
Extract from the report of the Sacred Congregation for the Cause of Saints - Stephan Pernet (contd).
(Rome, 1975)
A spiritual and apostolic message 
We must say more, because the example of the Servant of God is accompanied by a spiritual and apostolic message that is also permanent and relevant. 
The celebration of the centenary of the work of Fr Pernet and, even more, the holding in 1968-69, of the General Chapter for the aggiornamento of his Institute, made it possible to through new light on the Christian mystery of the person and work of the S.G.*. The written tradition and the living tradition came together to affirm some things that are constant in the thought and conduct of the S. G*. 
The thought of the S.G., even though presented in a very humble way in occasional letters and notes of talks he gave, expresses strong ideas, marked by Christian wisdom and tried out in life through prayer and the apostolate. The Directory he wrote for his religious sisters, some years before his death, gives a synthesis of it.
From the outset, Fr Pernet asked them, humbly but firmly, to go to the essential: ’To work at one’s own sanctification by spreading the reign of Our Lord’, – and for his disciples – ’among the humble, the ignorant, the sick and the poor’.
For that, he recalled the simple and exacting way: to have for Jesus an ’unreserved and exclusive love’, leading to faithful imitation and finding strength in the sacrament of the Eucharist and filial piety towards the Virgin Mary. Thus, one enters, to remain there, into the disposition to serve the Church tirelessly, even if only by humble and frail means. 
Putting it concretely, it is a matter of becoming, like the Church and for love of Jesus, ’the very humble servant and apostle of those little ones whom the Lord calls his own, in unalterable charity and unreserved devotedness’ and also with respect for the grace that precedes us and for the Church that guards us. 
Through the human development of the poor and the workers, he ceaselessly sought the Christian develop-ment of persons, and also conditions of life that would not separate profession of faith and practice of the faith.
Of course, it was in a specific period of time that the S. G. acted, and we too must act in a specific time. But, with him, we will learn not to enclose our action in the time when it takes place for fear of its being diluted and dying with that time. Following his example, our action will remain an action that is inspired by the Gospel and which gives first place to the proclamation of Salvation. 
We will learn again to respond in any period of time and in any place to the call of those who are poorest, in so far as the Lord inspires it and that it is possible for us to do so, but with a view to participating in the building up of the People of God, as Christ wishes: without violence, humbly, with human groups, within families, in the Church. 
The only ones who are capable of doing this are those who have unified their life in the love of Christ and of their neighbour, and who have lived in the simplicity of an evangelical behaviour, the very expression of the spirit of the beatitudes. 
When Father Pernet asked God for ’the union of minds in truth and of hearts in charity’, he was giving the secret of his spiritual and apostolic attitude: a mystical reality, experienced day after day as a grace of gift and of pardon, in the concrete reality of humble encounters and gratuitous devotedness. 
Extract no. 194
* S. G. = Servant of God 
Intentions confided and graces received 
From France 
A young father of a family, on dialysis for three years, was confided to Father Pernet as his condition had deteriorated because he had been unable to receive a kidney transplant. We have learned that it was possible to carry out this transplant in July 2014. 
From Colombia 
Carmen Maria who is suffering from a paralysis that is invading her whole body wrote this: 
’Thank you for the prayer for the beatification of Father Pernet, from this moment I am placing myself in his hands so that Jesus, through his intercession, may help me. I do not deserve so much love but if the Lord wills it He can heal me and make someone happy. Pray, pray!! If God wills it, He can.’ 
Since I agreed to turn to "Etienne" my legs have not been so swollen and I don’t feel so much pain. I have even been able to return to work in my neighbourhood. I have just finished giving a series of injections to an aged neighbour and I talked to her about Etienne Pernet; we are praying for one another… 
We are also praying for the cure of Patricia who is affected by sclerosis; she is not able to talk, nor use the computer to make herself understood and she feels she has been abandoned by her family.’ 
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