Wiaux, Mutien-Marie, St.

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Baptized Louis Joseph Wiaux; religious of the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools; b. Mellet (near Gosselies) Belgium, March 20, 1841; d. Malonne, Belgium, Jan. 29, 1917. Louis was the third of the six children of a blacksmith and his wife who ran a small café in their home. After attending the village school, he unsuccessfully undertook an apprenticeship in his father's forge. On July 1, 1865 he joined the Brothers of the Christian Schools who had just arrived in the area. Following his novitiate at Namur, he made his profession, took the name Mutien-Marie, and taught for three years (185658) in parish schools at Chimay and Brussels. For the next fifty-eight years he taught art and music at St. Bertuin's at Malonne and served as parish catechist during his free time. Soon after the death of the man called by his students "the brother who is always praying," miracles were attributed to his intercession. His tomb, moved into St. Bertuin's in Malonne, draws many pilgrims. In 1923, Bishop Heylen of Namur opened his cause, and he was beatified in 1977 by Paul VI. Mutien-Marie was canonized (Dec. 10, 1989) by John Paul II, not for great works, but for his transformation of the routine into moments of devotion.

Feast: Jan. 30 (De la Salle Brothers).

Bibliography: L'Osservatore Romano, English edition, no. 45 (1977): 89. l. salm, Brother Mutien-Marie Wiaux, FSC: Sanctity in Simplicity (Romeoville, Ill. 1989).

[k. i. rabenstein]