France’s Ancient Burial Brotherhood

A short item from the BBC on the Charitable Brotherhood of Saint-Eloi, founded as a response to the 12th century Black Death and still burying the residents of over thirty French municipalities, including the town of Béthune.

During the French Revolution, the Brotherhood was officially dissolved, but continued its activity in secret until 1802, where it was again authorized.

In 1853 the bishop of Arras asked the Brotherhood to submit to the supervision of the Church or to dissolve. The Brotherhood refused and thereafter became a secular organization, using the motto “Accuracy – Union – Charity”.

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