The Holy Families of New France

"Today it is the feast of the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph. Offer your family to our Lord and ask Him for the blessing so that the families which compose this parish are holy families."

Bishop of Saint-Vallier, Rituel du diocèse de Québec, 1703

By a decree of 1627, Louis XIII, also known as the devout king, ensured that New France would be a Catholic colony. The colonizers of this difficult land put their lives to the service of God. The arduous life of the colony and the religious mission which permeated it encouraged the attachment of these families to the cult of the Holy Family. This devotion originated in France and was popularized in New France by Mrs D'Ailleboust and her Holy Family Congregation. In Ville-Marie this devotion was encouraged by Marguerite Bourgeoys, by urging all the families of her entourage to live according to the principles of the Holy Family. In Quebec in 1703, Bishop Saint-Vallier in his Rituel recaptured the principle of this model.
Canadian Heritage Information Network, The Provincial Museum of Alberta,

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