"I believe in God.

        I hope in God.

 I love.

I want to live

and die for God."

Venerable Henriette Delille

                                                                    QUICK FACTS:
                                                  VENERABLE HENRIETTE'S STORY

          She was born in New Orleans, Louisiana in 1812 and died in 1862.
          Her great, great, grandmother was a slave who came  from West Africa.
          She had a large family who seemed to have been very close.
          The women in her family formed liaison relationships with white men.
          She had one sister, Cecile Bonile, who  formed a liaison with a wealthy Austrian, Samuel Hart. 

          She had two brothers: one named, Jean Delille, and one who died as an infant.   
          Her brother’s daughter, Judith Delille Vincent, had 13 children. 
          Henriette’s 4th and 5th generation relatives have been found and have visited the Sisters at the Motherhouse.

          In recent findings (2004) in funeral records, Henriette may have given birth to two sons who died before the a     
          of three.  Since she had not received the Sacrament of Confirmation, this did not interfere with her canonization
          process.
          Not only was she very devout, but from a very young girl she was involved in catechizing.   
          Records show that Henriette served as godmother to many slave children and as witness to numerous marriages.
          Assisted by Juliette Gaudin, her life­long friend, and Josephine
Charles, she began her work with the Order

          around 1836.  To help Delille accomplish her work, loyal lay men and women of her race, established the
          Association of the Holy Family in 1847.
          According to Sister M. Bernard Deggs’ Journal, the Community was very poor and the Sisters made many    

          sacrifices so that they might accomplish their mission of serving the poor.
         
To care for the aged and infirm was one of the first works of Henriette and the early group of women. That work
          continues today at Lafon Nursing Facility of the Holy Family which is the oldest continued Catholic nursing
          home  in the United States.  
          Henriette faced insurmountable odds in the form of social, political,
and ecclesiastical opposition and overcame

          them.      
          In the face of slavery and racism, she persevered.  Even when it appeared that the group would fall apart, she
          kept on going. 
          Henriette was a woman of deep faith, hope, and love.  

          Her obituary ends with this quote:  “For the love of Jesus Christ, she made herself the humble servant of slaves”
          This is her legacy.  Therefore, she should be canonized.



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