Blessed Daniel Brottier

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Priest. Born in France in 1876, Daniel began his working life as a teacher. After a few years working at home he felt drawn to the priesthood and joined the missionary Congregation of the Holy Spirit. In 1899 he was ordained and sent to Senegal, West Africa. After eight years service there, ill-health forced him to return to France, where he helped raise funds for the construction of a new cathedral in Senegal.

On the outbreak of the First World War Fr Daniel became a volunteer chaplain and spent four years at the front. He risked his life many times ministering to the suffering and dying soldiers. He attributed his survival in the trenches to the intercession of Saint Therese of Lisieux.

After the war he helped establish a project for orphaned and abandoned children in a Paris suburb and spent the rest of his life there. He died in 1936 and was beatified by Pope John Paul II in Paris only 48 years later.

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