Beatified By: 16 October 1988 by Pope John Paul II
Canonized By: 3 June 2007 by Pope Benedict XVI
John Houben was born in Munstergeleen, on 11th December 1821. Having decided to consecrate his life to God, he entered the Passionist Novitiate at Ere, Tournai, in 1845. He made his religious profession on 10th December 1846 and was ordained to the priesthood on 21st December 1850.
He was appointed to the Passionists' new English foundation in 1852, shortly after the death of Blessed Dominic Barberi, who had laboured strenuously for the return of our separated brethren to the Catholic faith. Following the example of Blessed Dominic, an apostle of Ecumenism, Charles worked hard for the good of souls and the unity of the Church, first in England and later in Ireland, where he died with a great reputation for holiness on 5th January 1893, the vigil of the Epiphany of the Lord. A man of great prayer, in the style of Saint Paul of the Cross and the first Passionists, he was noted more for his apostolate of blessing and hearing confessions than for his preaching.
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By Justin Soutar
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