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Jean-Marie Vianney

Saint Jean-Marie Vianney, Diocesan Priest and Member of the Third Order of Mary (1786 – 1859)

Many people recognize the name of St. John-Marie Vianney, the Cure of Ars, but few know that he was professed a member of the Third Order of Mary by St. Julian Eymard on December 8, 1846.  In 1854, Father Colin granted approval for Vianney to receive members into the Third Order of Mary.

The village of Ars was near Belley and Lyons where the Marists established themselves.   St. John-Marie Vianney advised a number of men to become Marist priests, a number of women to become Marist sisters, and he directed many lay people to the Third Order of Mary.     

St. John-Marie Vianney was aware of the missionary efforts of the Marists in the Bugey Mountains.  He said,  “The Marists, theirs is a work according to God’s own heart because there is humility, simplicity, and contradictions; they are setting about it in the right way, beginning their missions by teaching the catechism and first communions. . . the Marist is more hidden.  Were I more talented, I would become Marist.”

Ordained in 1815 and made parish priest of Ars in 1818, St. John-Marie Vianney became known for his great love of the Eucharist, the many hours he spent in the confessional and his spirit of poverty.  As early as 1827 people came from other places to consult him.  In the last year of his life, more than 100,000 people visited Ars.  St. John- Marie Vianney served Ars for 41 years, and in all that time his personal preference was to run away from the crowds and be alone with God.  

Pius XI canonized St. John-Marie Vianney in 1925 and named him the patron saint of parish priests in 1929.  His feast day is August 4.