Saturday, January 24, 2015

Another Martin Saint

Wonderful news! The Cause of Leonie Martin, sister of St Therese of Lisieux and daughter of Blesseds Louis and Zelie Martin has been opened in the Diocese of Bayeux-Lisieux. 

Leonie, or Sr Francoise-Therese in religion, had a difficult life but became one of the first disciples of her sister and a major exponent of the Little Way. She was restless for most of her early life, indeed she was a victim of abuse by one of the Martin family servants - the cause of Leonie's difficulties. She tried her vocation a number of times, but could never settle. After Therese's death she went to the Visitation Sisters in Caen and there she found a loving home and peace in her heart - I personally believe St Therese obtained many graces for her sister so she could settle. Leonie went on to live a holy life, and since her death in 1941 her cult has been steadily growing.

I remembering visiting her tomb in the crypt of the Visitation Sisters in Caen, it was a wonderful experience.  Her tomb was covered in letters, notes, flowers, photographs, testaments to the many people who had visited seeking Leonie's prayers.  Let's hope we will see her beatified very soon.

In terms of patronage, I think Leonie would be a powerful patron for the abused and those experiencing physiological and behavioural difficulties. If you are looking a good biography you should get Leonie Martin: A Difficult Life by Marie Baudouin-Croix, a wonderful book and a must for those parents who may have a difficult child.

Leonie's tomb in Caen


  1. Indeed the opening of the cause for sainthood for Leonie Martin is joyful news for the whole church! Leonie was one of the first to practice the Little Way of St. Therese, her younger sister. Leonie was a model of humility and perseverence. To learn more about her, i recommend you visit

  2. I, too, rejoice that Leonie is receiving the recognition she deserves. She is indeed a saint. Canonisation will add nothing to that. But it will make her known to many more people. I am praying to Leonie for a very special favour and already I see signs that she is listening and hearing my prayer. Thank you Leonie.