Path to Sainthood

1879 Jeanne Jugan dies in obscurity at the motherhouse on August 29, 1879.

late 1890s
Mother General Augustine de St. André commissions Rev. Arsène Leroy, the motherhouse chaplain, to research the Congregation’s archives with the goal of “discovering and revealing the truth” about Jeanne Jugan.

Rev. Leroy’s History of the Little Sisters of the Poor is published, establishing the truth about the Congregation’s beginnings and reinstating Jeanne Jugan as foundress.

early 1900s The Sisters at the motherhouse who knew Jeanne Jugan are asked to record their memories of her.

Opening of the diocesan investigation “on the reputation for holiness” of Jeanne Jugan. During the 1930s Little Sisters all over the world who had known Jeanne Jugan in their youth are asked to send their remembrances of her to Mother General.

The cause for Beatification is introduced in Rome on July 10th.

1970–1976 Study of our foundress’ life by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints; preparation of the Positio, official presentation of her life and virtues.

1979 The centenary of Jeanne Jugan’s death is celebrated throughout the Congregation.


On July 13th Pope John Paul II proclaims the “heroicity of the virtues” of Jeanne Jugan and declares her “Venerable.”

The “medically inexplicable” and sudden cure of Mr. Antoine Schlatter, a Resident of our home in Toulon, France, is recognized as the miracle necessary for the beatification of our Mother. The decree recognizing the miracle is signed on May 11th.

On October 3rd
Jeanne Jugan is beatified by Pope John Paul II in St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome.

In early March the superior of our home in Kansas City, Missouri (USA) is contacted by Mrs Jeanne Gatz of Omaha, Nebraska, who informs her that her husband was cured of cancer through the intercession of Jeanne Jugan in 1989. An investigation into this cure is begun.

At the end of September a diocesan Tribunal takes place in Omaha, Nebraska, to gather evidence on the cure of Dr. Edward Gatz.

On December 6th Pope Benedict signs the decree approving the miraculous cure of Dr. Edward Gatz
through the intercession of Blessed Jeanne Jugan, clearing the way for her canonization. (CLICK HERE to learn more about the miracle; CLICK HERE for interview with Dr and Mrs Gatz)

The Vatican consistory announcing the date for the canonization is held on February 21st

Jeanne Jugan is canonized on October 11, 2009, along with Blessed Damien of Molokai and three other Blesseds!

  • Happy mother and daughter in St Peter's Square

  • Canonization Mass Entrance Procession

  • Postulators present their saints ot the Holy Father

  • Presentation of the relics of Saint Jeanne Jugan

  • Canonization pilgrim from Chile

  • Canonization Offertory Procession

  • Dr Edward Gatz receives Communion

  • Communion in St Peter's Square during Canonization Mass

  • Pope Benedict speaks after Mass

  • Saint Jeanne Jugan looks out over St Peter's Square