le Clerc, Alix, Bl.

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Foundress with St. Peter Fourier of the Congregation of Notre Dame; b. Remiremont, Lorraine, France, Feb. 2, 1576; d. Nancy, France, Jan. 9, 1622. A dream of the

Blessed Virgin wearing the habit of the future Congregation of Notre Dame induced youthful Alix Le Clerc to sacrifice the pleasures of a wealthy bourgeois family and, at the direction of her pastor, Peter fourier, to organize a community dedicated to the free education of youth. Fourier drafted the first constitutions, which were provisionally approved in 1598, confirmed in 1617, and finally approved by Pope urban viii in 1628. Alix braved the difficulties of new foundations, false accusations, and public humiliations; she persevered in constant, appalling, corporal penances and still maintained equanimity and personal charm. Her cause for canonization was introduced in 1899. She was beatified on May 4, 1947. Alix's work lives on not only in her own congregation, but in the Canadian Congregation de Notre Dame founded in 1650 by St. Marguerite bourgeoys, who was inspired by the work of the earlier society. The Canonesses Regular of St. Augustine were reformed on the Notre Dame pattern by Fourier. The School Sisters of Notre Dame founded in 1833 also follow the Rule of Fourier.

Feast: October 22.

Bibliography: r. bazin, Take This Child, tr. m. a. gelson (Boston 1948). m. s. l. west, Blessed Alix Le Clerc (London 1947). p. de gonneville, La Mère Alix Le Clerc (Paris 1947). a. butler, The Lives of the Saints, 4 v. (New York 1956) 1:5963.

[m. p. trauth]

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le Clerc, Alix, Bl.

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