Viatorians worldwide pause every Sept. 1 to remember their founder, the Venerable Fr. Louis Querbes. He founded the congregation in 1831, in Vourles, France, where he served as pastor of a small church.
As Viatorians remember the anniversary of his death, Sept. 1 would likely become his feast day should Fr. Querbes be beatified and perhaps canonized.
Viatorians celebrated the day in different ways around the world, but associate and professed members in Bourbonnais/Kankakee — where Viatorians first arrived in this country in 1865 — gathered to remember Fr. Querbes and his founding mission, and those Viatorians who went before them.
They gathered at the historic Maternity BVM Cemetery in Bourbonnais, where many Viatorians who served in the region are buried. Fr. Patrick Render, CSV, led the prayer service, which included reading aloud the names of Viatorians buried there and praying for the beatification of Fr. Querbes.
The group included Viatorians who serve at Maternity BVM, St. George and St. Patrick parishes, as well as at Bishop McNamara Catholic School.
It was a good turnout of women and men, devoted to advancing the charism of Fr. Querbes, which is to “announce Jesus Christ and his Gospel, and to raise up communities where faith is lived, deepened and celebrated.”