Foundation of Our Lady of Cambron, France (1148) – 24 July:
This feast day celebrates the Foundation of the Abbey of Our Lady of Cambron, near Mons, in Hainault, Belgium, by Anselm de Trasigny, Lord of Peronne and Canon of Soignies, in the year 1148. The Abbey of Cambron was founded on the River Blanche and was a daughter house of Saint Bernard of Clairvaux. It was situated some distance from Mons in Cambron-Casteau in Hainaut, Belgium and took its name from the land on which it was built. Cambron, in its turn, had daughter houses in the Abbeys of Fontenelle at Valenciennes and six other sites. The image of Our Lady formerly honoured at Cambron was famous for a great number of miraculous cures. A Chapel dedicated to Our Lady of Cambron, was built at Mons in 1550 in a part of the Prince’s park. In the following centuries the magistrates of Mons had a beautiful door built for the Shrine and added other embellishments. There was a small but well honoured and visited Oratory. In 1559, thieves broke into the Chapel and stole everything of value. After the French Revolution when the State took over all properties belonging to the Church, this Chapel of Our Lady of Cambron was also taken. It was demolished after all the wood, iron and lead was removed. The Statue of the Blessed Virgin which decorated the Altar was then placed in the Church of Saint Elizabeth at Mons. The Abbey of Cambron was rebuilt in the 18th Century but was ordered to be vacated in 1783 by the Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II. It was later sold to a wealthy Count who built a mansion on the property and the land remained in his family’s hands until it was sold in 1993 to a family, who turned the holy and once revered site, into the location of a public zoo known as the Pairi Daiza. Verneration of Our Lady of Cambron: “In 1322 there was a serious incident at Cambron. An image of the Virgin Mary was profaned. The widely held suspicion was that a Jewish perpetrator had falsified conversion to Christianity to gain access to the image. The affair caused significant unrest and provoked the sympathy of many Christians. There were prayers and devotions held to repair the image. Thus the devotion to Our Lady of Cambron was begun. After a request by the King of France Philip of Valois, Pope Benedict XII issued a Papal Bull granting indulgences to pilgrims to Cambron. The pilgrimage to the Virgin of Cambron was thus begun. A solemn procession takes place each year on the third Sunday of Easter.”
Among the pilgrims and visitors were several important figures, including the Emperor Maximilian I, who, passing through Belgium in the early 16th century, visited the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Cambron. He gave the Abbey sufficient funds to commission the restoration of the painted image.
Martyred in England: John Boste Joseph Lambton Nicholas Garlick Richard Simpson Robert Ludlam
Martyred in the Spanish Civil War: Bl Cándido Castán San José Bl Cecilio Vega Domínguez St Ignacio González Calzada St Jaime Gascón Bordas Bl José Joaquín Esnaola Urteaga Bl José Máximo Moro Briz St Josep Guillamí Rodo St Marcos Morón Casas Bl Maria Angeles of Saint Joseph Bl Maria Mercedes Prat Bl Maria Pilar of Saint Francis Borgia Bl Teresa of the Child Jesus and of Saint John of the Cross St Xavier Bordas Piferrer