Novena for the beatification of the Founder: February 2021

The motivational texts for the Novena of February 2021 are taken from the reports of the Ponent of the Cause for the Beatification of Brother Gabriel, Cardinal André Jullien, and the two Censors, appointed by him, for the writings of the Servant of God Brother Gabriel Taborin. These texts are dated 1962.


The Holy Father, having deigned to entrust to me the office of Ponent of the Cause for the Beatification of your Founder, Brother Gabriel Taborin, I shall fulfil with the greatest care, rest assured, the duties it entails.

Moreover, a very large part of this Cause belongs to you. For a Congregation, the Beatification of its Founder is a great grace, and it must be deserved by constant prayer, as well as by a growing fervour in the accomplishment of the mission entrusted to it by the Church, and by a generous fidelity to progress in the spirit given by the Founder to his Institute. I wish you with all my heart to obtain from God the happy outcome of the Cause of Brother Taborin. (A. Card. Jullien). (19-4-1960)

Prayer for each day.

God our Father, who raised up in the Church the Venerable Brother Gabriel Taborin to promote Christian education, catechesis and liturgical animation, grant us that, in sharing his charisma, we know how to fulfil our mission today for the good of the family and society with the strength of your Spirit. And if it be thy will, let him be enrolled in the number of saints, by granting us through his intercession the grace we need… (we can mention the names of the people we want to pray for). We ask this with insistence through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen


Whatever the recipient or the subject, these letters manifest his religious vocation, a vocation in a straight line. Whether he writes in 1835 or in 1863, he writes with the same soul, the same thought, the same heart, the same kindness, the same zeal, the same accuracy. From his adolescence he was concerned with the education of youth to help the salvation of souls and the good of society. In him, God’s call to this apostolate was never silent and constantly stimulated him, as was the evidence of the providential help he recognised with thanksgiving.

Prayer: God our Father…


At the end of a begging letter, the only one in which he shows bitterness, to obtain from Mgr Devie the chaplain he wanted for his Mother House and the Novitiate, as an apology, he described himself: “I have my little pride and my bad moments, but I am aware that my intentions are good and are only for the good. I am sometimes lacking in form, but one must also have a little respect for a poor Brother who has only had a bad fourth and who has always been a rude peasant”. But, I repeat, under this bark there is righteousness and the desire to do good. This simplicity, which is virtue, attracts the humble, hence the number of postulants and novices he recruits. From his first attempt, he knew how to surround himself with companions in the apostolate, knowing not to be discouraged by their lack of perseverance.

Prayer: God our Father…


Forgive. This is also one of its virtues. “All my life I have had a penchant for mercy”. He is always very paternally affectionate with his religious. If they are guilty or faulty, he treats them with severity from the beginning of the letter, but at the end: “Do not take anything of what I have told you in this letter in a bad way: it is dictated by the feeling of duty; you find justice and truth in it”. He consoles himself: “God will keep our patience and charity in mind”. “Alas, I see man everywhere and when I think that I have a number of them to lead, I am afraid to be man myself”.

Prayer: God our Father…


Jesus, Mary, Joseph and Saint Anne are at the centre of his devotions. He founded his Institute under the name of the Healthy Family, which he felt represented the spirit of his apostolate. The special Mass, for which he obtained a concession from the Bishopric of Belley, solemnised the closure of the great retreat and the ceremony of taking the habit and the vows. Nothing seems grand enough to him for this feast of his religious family. The Archconfraternity in honour of St Anne established in his native parish put the crowning touch to his pious plans.

Prayer: God our Father…


To practice the virtues of Christian perfection in order to serve the priests, helping them to catechise the children of their parish or assisting them at the altar, properly decorated to ensure a liturgy favourable to the piety of the faithful, singing the offices well and taking care of everything in the sacristy that contributes to the dignity of the cult: this is what Brother Gabriel had the inspiration to organise.

Prayer: God our Father…


And it was so much what the clergy expected that from all over France came requests from the Brothers and even the Holy Curé d’Ars who became his friend and benefactor.

The humble valet of a bishop, by his fidelity to the grace of his vocation, rose to the rank of great servant of the Church, father and model of a living line of servants of the Church. (Rome, 2 July 1962).

Prayer: God our Father…


I can say that in him there is an ardent zeal for the glory of God, a sincere piety in the exercise of the virtue of religion and a great zeal for the salvation of souls. In fact, he founded the Congregation of the Brothers of the Holy Family in response to the desire of his Bishop; he set him the task of promoting the worship of God in the parishes, for one of the aims of the Congregation is to provide sacristans and singers to help the priests of the parishes in the celebration of the offices; another aim is to prepare teachers for the instruction of children in parish schools and also to apply themselves to works of charity towards the sick and even the insane in hospitals.

Prayer: God our Father…


Great was his respect for the Sovereign Pontiff, of whom he always spoke with honour, for the Bishops, the Parish Priests and the civil authorities.

He was assiduous in the exercise of the virtues of the religious vows; although Superior General of his Institute, he did not want to dispose of any sum of money, except with the approval of his Consel; in this his spirit of poverty and obedience shines.

Prayer: God our Father…