June 27, 2015: statement from the bishops of Seez and of Bayeux-Lisieux on the announcement that Louis and Zelie Martin will be canonized on October 18, 2015

With thanks to the Shrine at Lisieux, I share with you this English translation of the statement given by Mgr Jacques Habert, Bishop of Seez, and Mgr Jean-Claude Boulanger, bishop of Bayeux and Lisieux, immediately after the Pope announced the canonization of Blessed Louis and Zelie Martin.  

Communique immediately after the announcement
of the canonization of Louis and Zelie Martin

The news that we have just received from Rome announcing the canonization of Louis and Zelie Martin fills us with joy.

Joy in heaven for this family, joy on earth for the whole Church.

We thank Pope Francis for giving to the church and  the world, for the first time, saintly spouses and parents as an example.

We thank Pope Francis for telling us how marriage is a path to holiness.

We awaited this decision with confidence.  It is the successful conclusion of a process begun sixty years ago (1956).  The beatification in 2008 was a milestone.

For the Shrines of Alençon and Lisieux, this canonization is also a responsibility.

  • Alencon: the city where the family lived, where Louis and Zelie celebrated their marriage, where they celebrated the baptisms of their children.  The place of the ordinary family life, happy, committed, and often tested by trials.
  • Lisieux: the city where the family moved  after the death of Zelie, the place where the daughters successively decided to enter religious life.  The place of Louis’s illness and death. 

If the Church canonizes some of her children, it does so to offer them as examples, so that they may inspire Christians of all times.  It is for us to deepen the wealth.  The one who wants to discover the Martin family in all its truth must go both to Alençon and Lisieux. This couple, this family has experienced the joy of the Gospel in all its dimensions.

Now that the Church has recognized their holiness, may they help us, with their daughters Therese and Leonie, to move forward on this path.


+ Jean Claude BOULANGER. (Bishop of Bayeux).

+ Jacques HABERT. (Bishop of Séez).

Note that Bishop Boulanger is conducting a press conference at the Basilica at Lisieux right now (12:30 p.m. Lisieux time).