The rite of beatification gave rise to a procession during which the relic of Pauline Jaricot’s heart was carried to the altar.

Born in 1799 into a family of silk industrialists, this pioneer of secular social Catholicism is known for having founded the Work for the Propagation of the Faith, intended to support Catholic missions on all continents, and which became a century more later a pillar of the Pontifical Mission Societies (PMS).

According to the Archbishop of Lyon, Mge Olivier de Germay, the representatives of the pontifical mission societies of more than a hundred countries were present for this tribute to “a woman who lived in the 19th century but who is basically very modern”. In the public at the Eurexpo park, participants waved a Polish flag and Malagasy dancers marched through the bays.

The prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, who is presiding over the ceremony, read a letter in English from Pope Francis accepting that Pauline Jaricot “be henceforth called blessed”.

“After reading the life of Pauline Jaricot, I said to myself that she was perhaps born in Lyon, France, but that she could also have been African, Asian, American, Oceanian, so much her love, her passion for Jesus and for the poor are universal,” Bishop Tagle previously told reporters.

At the end of this reading, the portrait of Pauline Jaricot was unveiled and applauded by the faithful, of all ages and who showed great fervor, singing religious songs in choir.

– Miracle –  

The beatification of Pauline Jaricot comes after the recognition in 2020 of her intercession in the healing of Mayline Tran in 2012, a three-year-old girl who had choked while eating and whose condition was then considered desperate by doctors.

After nine days of prayer to Pauline Jaricot, the girl’s health improved until her “extraordinary recovery”, according to her medical file.

“Miracles do exist and Mayline is living proof of it,” her father Emmanuel Tran said with emotion before mass, in front of the audience of worshipers where the miraculous young girl stands in the front row, smiling.

In the audience, Xavier, a 55-year-old from Lyon, believes that “a beatification is always a great event”. “It’s not just about rewarding someone from the past but about shining a light on them for the present and the future,” he continued.

“This is a first step, we have canonization in our sights,” a descendant of Pauline Jaricot’s brother, Hugues de Roquette-Buisson, told AFP.

Pope John XXIII had already declared her “venerable” in 1952, but to become a saint, “Pauline Jaricot must perform a second miracle”, he recalled.

Among the cardinals and bishops present on the vast platform set up for the occasion, was the former archbishop of Lyon Philippe Barbarin, who left Lyon in 2020 after his release on appeal for his silences on the sexual assaults of a former priest. of the diocese. Bishop Barbarin, red cap on his head, spoke only once during the Eucharist.