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Père Jacques:

We cannot see Christ and remain as we are. We cannot exchange a look with Christ and not be overcome with a total conversion.Closing Quote

About Us

The Friends of Père Jacques de Jésus are dedicated to making Père Jacques de Jésus known to the world and furthering his cause for canonization.Closing Quote

He Said:

  • Only One Law

    When asked why he had disobeyed the laws against sheltering Jews, "I know of only one law, that of the gospels and of love."
  • Silence

    "We cannot hear the voice of God, who speaks without words, except in silence."
  • Our Life as Prayer

    "Our life must be a constant, silent prayer that rises unceasingly to God. That is what constitutes our duty in life."

Père Jacques de Jésus - Lucien Bunel

Père Jacques de Jésus (1900-1945) Père Jacques de Jésus was a Carmelite friar and headmaster of the Petit Collège Sainte-Thérèse de l’Enfant-Jésus.

Angered at Nazi policies, Père Jacques made the boys’ school in Avon, France, a refuge for young men seeking to avoid conscription for forced labor in Germany and for Jews. In January 1943, he enrolled three Jewish boys - Hans-Helmut Michel, Jacques-France Halpern, and Maurice Schlosser - as students under false names. He also hid a fourth Jewish boy, Maurice Bas, as a worker at the school; sheltered Schlosser's father with a local villager; and placed the noted Jewish botanist, Lucien Weil, on the school’s faculty.

Informed of the Carmelite friar’s activities, the Gestapo seized Père Jacques and the three Jewish students on January 15, 1944. Weil, his mother, and sister were arrested at their home that same day. On February 3, 1944, German authorities deported the boys and the Weil family to Auschwitz, where they perished. Père Jacques was imprisoned in several Nazi camps before being liberated by American troops at Mauthausen in early May 1945. Suffering from tuberculosis and weighing only 75 pounds, he died several weeks later.

In 1985 the Israeli Holocaust remembrance center, Yad Vashem, posthumously honored Père Jacques as one of the "Righteous Among the Nations." Two years later, French filmmaker Louis Malle paid tribute to his former headmaster in the film, "Au revoir les enfants."

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