France. Last November 10, in Narbonne, the 150th anniversary was commemorated of the arrival to the Monastery of Fontfroide of Jean-Marie Léonard, the abbot who received Saint Anthony Mary Claret on August 6, 1870, and protected him against those who wanted to arrest him and deliver him to the Spanish authorities.
The Abbot of the Cister of Lérins invited Fr. General, as early as last month of June, to participate in this day. Since he was unable to accept the invitation because of previous commitments, Fr. General delegated Fr. José-Félix Valderrábano, General Secretary, as his representative. It was a fair way to recognize and thank the Cistercian Order for the reception P. Jean had offered to our Founder.
In the church of Saint Paul of Narbonne, the bishop of Carcassone and Narbonne presided over a Mass in which participated the Bishop Emeritus of the diocese, the abbots of Lérins and Saint Marie of the dessert, several Cistercian monks, some thirty priests, the Claretian community of Narbonne and more than five hundred persons. The diocesan Bishop himself, Mons. Planet, gave a conference in the “Hall of the Synods of the Archbishop’s Palace” (the present City Hall), in which he expressly made mention of the presence of Saint Anthony Mary Claret in Fontfroide.