Br Solomon was a martyr of the French Revolution.

The De La Salle Brothers in Singapore will hold a Mass of Thanksgiving and Remembrance to honour of one of their Brothers, Blessed Solomon Leclercq, who will be canonised a saint on Oct 16.

The Mass will be celebrated on Nov 5 at 5 pm in the Chapel of St Patrick’s School, 490 East Coast Road.

All members of the greater Lasallian community are invited, including alumni, students and staff of the eight Lasallian schools, HopeHouse and LASALLE College of the Arts, as well as friends and associates of the Brothers. Deceased members of the past year from among the Lasallian family will also be remembered at the Mass.

Br Solomon was a martyr of the French Revolution (1789-1799), among the many bishops, priests, Religious and Catholic faithful who died for the faith during this turbulent period.

“The canonisation of Br Solomon is a blessing not only for the Brothers, but for the entire Lasallian family as well,” said Br Kelvin Tan, the local coordinator for the De La Salle Brothers in Singapore.

“While not all of us are faced with the prospect of dying for the faith, we are all called to bear witness to it, and Br Solomon serves as a model of great trust in God, of love for the Church, and fidelity to promises made, in his case, through his vows as a Religious Brother.”

Br Solomon was the religious name of Nicolas Leclercq, who was born in 1745 in Boulogne, France. He took this name when he entered the novitiate at the age of 21. He served as a teacher, director of novices, bursar, and eventually as secretary to the Superior General.

In 1790, with the French Revolution underway, the Civil Constitution of the Clergy gave the state complete control over the Church in France. The government began selling Church property and requiring all clergy and Religious to make an oath to the government in order for their institutions to maintain their legal, operating status.

Like many priests and Religious at the time, most of the Brothers refused to take the oath.

On Aug 15, 1792, as the fury of the revolution raged in Paris, the Brothers’ house that Br Solomon was living in was invaded by a mob and he was led away to a Carmelite monastery that had been converted into a prison.

Two weeks later, on Sept 2, a mob stormed the monastery and killed him and about 150 other priests and Religious.

Pope Pius XI beatified Br Solomon in 1926 as well as 188 other Catholic martyrs.

The miracle attributed to the intercession of Blessed Br Solomon is the inexplicable cure in 2007 of a Venezuelan girl who was bitten by a venomous snake.

Br Solomon will be the 14th member of the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools (the official name of the De La Salle Brothers) to be canonised, the first being the founder of the Brothers, St John Baptist de La Salle, who died in 1719, was canonised in 1900, and proclaimed the Patron Saint of Teachers in 1950.

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