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François Bourgoing

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Third Superior general of the Congregation of the Oratory in France and one of the early companions of Cardinal de Bérulle , the founder of the French Oratorians, b. at Paris, 1585; d. in 1662. Bourgoing came from a family of which many members had been magistrates. Before joining the Oratorians he was curé of Clichy and resigned this position in favour of St. Vincent de Paul , who was also a disciple and friend of de Bérulle. After entering the congregation he was soon occupied in founding and directing new houses of the Oratorians, being called in all directions by the bishops of France and Flanders. In 1631 he was made assistant to the Superior General, Père de Condren, and in 1641, upon the death of the latter, he was appointed to the vacant office. As superior general he toiled with unceasing zeal in organizing and developing the congregation. He was also an energetic opponent of the Jansenist heresy . After his death Bossuet delivered the funeral oration. Father Bourgoing was a writer of the first rank of asceticism, as Bossuet testifies. His principal work, "Vérités et excellences de Jésus Christ notre Sauveur", has been issued more than thirty times, including an edition in 1906, and has been translated into several languages. Equally remarkable is his work, "Exercices de retraites", of which he published four series.

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