» April 27 – Blessed Nicolas Roland

April 27 – Blessed Nicolas Roland

Here are some resources that are available online, either via this website or others.

 ONLINE RESOURCES

1) There are a number of Lasalliana articles about Nicolas Roland, and a good biography online..

2) Further online information and links may be found at Wikipedia, WikiVisually, and other places.

3) Various kinds of artwork are collected on this Google Photos album.

4) The Motherhouse in Rome has provided  a PDF with the liturgical (Mass) readings and prayers for this Lasallian feast.

 

SHORT BIOGRAPHY

Nicholas Roland was born at Reims (France) December 8, 1642. He attended the Jesuit College in that city before going on to Paris to Study philosophy and theology. He was ordained as a priest 1667-68? (records lost during the Revolution). Upon his return to Reims in 1665, he was named a Canon of the Cathedral, as was John Baptist de La Salle the following year. When De La Salle returned to Reims from the seminary in Paris after the death of his parents, he took Roland, who was about ten years older than De La Salle, as his spiritual director. Roland encouraged De La Salle to continue his studies and to take minor orders in preparation for the priesthood.

 

Meanwhile Roland had come in contact with Father Barré in Rouen, whose Sisters of Providence were actively engaged in schools for poor girls. This motivated Roland to establish something similar in his native Reims. In 1670 he took charge of a house of orphans, “these suffering Jesus”, in Reims. He brought from Rouen two Sisters to take care of them, educate them and announce to them Jesus Christ. Open to God and filled with the apostolic currents of his time, he gathered into his house the priests of Reims in order to live more closely Jesus and His Mystery, and to learn to speak in a more apostolic way, without rhetoric. The arrival of the two dedicated women from Rouen in 1670 provided the foundation for a new community that would become the Sisters of the Child Jesus of Reims. For him, for the priests, and for the Sisters, what mattered was not activity nor apostolic projects but belonging to God, leaving to Him the initiative for everything and remaining a docile instrument in His hands. Roland died at the age of 37, exhausted from his attempts to get approval for the Sisters and a victim of a fever contracted while attending to them during an epidemic. On his deathbed, he named De La Salle as the executor of his will, thus engaging for the first time the newly-ordained Canon to the ministry of Christian education for the children of the poor.

 

Died: 26 April 1678
Beatified: 16 October 1994

 


FURTHER RESOURCES

 

 

Soeur Danièle Sautray, Sup.Gen.
Soeurs du Saint Enfant-Jésus
48 rue du Barbâtre
51097 REIMS CEDEX – FRANCE
Tel: 03 24 38 60 84
E-mail: soeurdaniele@neuf.fr
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