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Jordan, Francis Mary of the Cross


Religious founder; b. Gurtweil (Baden), Germany, June 16, 1848; d. Tafers, Switzerland, Sept. 8, 1918. After seminary studies in Freiburg im Breisgau, he was ordained (1878). Interest in Oriental studies led to his extended visit to the Holy Land (1880). Upon returning to Rome he founded the salvatorians to combat modern evils and to circumvent the religious restrictions imposed by the kulturkampf. Jordan and two other priests pronounced their religious vows on Dec. 8, 1881. At this time the founder, whose baptismal name was John Baptist, took the name Francis Mary of the Cross. Jordan's original aim was to form a loosely knit group of priests, but he deferred to the wishes of Rome and reorganized his society into a congregation of priests and brothers. As superior general until 1915, Jordan witnessed the spread of the Salvatorians to several countries. He visited the U.S. and established the first permanent foundation in this country at St. Nazianz, Wisconsin. In 1883 Jordan organized a community of religious women whose superior was Mother Petra Streitel. This group was the nucleus of the franciscan sisters of the sorrowful mother, organized into a new congregation in 1885. In 1888 Jordan cooperated with Mother Mary of the Apostles to found the Sisters of the divine savior, who were to aid the Salvatorians in their labors. The decretum super scripta in Jordan's cause for beatification was issued in 1956.

Bibliography: f. m. jordan, Exhortations and Admonitions, tr. w. herbst (2d ed. St. Nazianz, Wisconsin 1946). p. pfeiffer, Father Francis Mary of the Cross Jordan, tr. w. herbst (St. Nazianz, Wisconsin 1936).

[r. mollen]

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