Above: The French Tricolor Flag, Which Flew Over the Saints’ Homeland for Most of Her Life
SAINT MARY MAGDALEN POSTEL (NOVEMBER 28, 1756- JULY 17, 1846)
Founder of the Poor Daughters of Mercy
Julia Frances Catherine Postel was born at Barfleur, France. Educated at the Volognes convent, she opened a girl’s school. That school had to close during the French Revolution. The Roman Catholic Church had supported the old royalist order, so the Church became a target for revolutionaries. Sometimes innocents paid the price for the hierarchy’s support for an absolutist monarchy and an exploitative system. During the Revolutionary period the saint sheltered fugitive priests (those who had not sworn loyalty to the First Republic). Those fugitive priests celebrated Masses in her home.
The saint worked in religious education after the Concordat of 1801. At Cherbourg, in 1807, she took the monastic name Mary Magdalen and founded the Poor Daughters of Mercy. The order experienced difficulties and setbacks during its early years yet found stability in 1832.
As a holder of two undergraduate degrees in education I understand the value of a good education. And, as one who has taught good Sunday School lessons and suffered through bad ones, I grasp the true worth of excellent religious education. So I honor the saint, the first superior of the order she founded. May her devotion to this cause inspire others in the same cause.
KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR
JUNE 15, 2012 COMMON ERA
THE FEAST OF SAINT LANDELINUS OF VAUX, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT; SAINT AUBERT OF CAMBRAI, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP; SAINT URSMAR OF LOBBES, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT AND MISSIONARY BISHOP; AND SAINTS DOMITIAN, HADELIN, AND DODO OF LOBBES, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONKS
THE FEAST OF EVELYN UNDERHILL, ANGLICAN MYSTIC
Almighty God, we praise you for your servant Saint Mary Magdalen Postel,
through whom you have called the church to its tasks and renewed its life.
Raise up in our own day teachers and prophets inspired by your Spirit,
whose voices will give strength to your church and proclaim the reality of your reign,
through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever. Amen.
1 Corinthians 3:11-23
—Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), page 60