Doctor Who Found Cause of Down Syndrome Moves Closer to Canonization

Diocesan Phase Closes for Jérôme Lejeune

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PARIS, FEB. 23, 2012 ( This spring, the Archdiocese of Paris will officially conclude the diocesan phase of the cause of canonization for Dr. Jérôme Lejeune.

The April 11 ceremony will include a Mass for life in the Notre Dame Cathedral.

Jérôme Lejeune (1926-1994) was a doctor and researcher. The father of modern genetics, he was awarded the Kennedy Prize in 1962 for the discovery of the chromosomal cause of Trisomy 21. Known for having treated and supported numerous patients affected by intellectual disabilities and for his commitment to human life, he was a member of the Academy of Moral and Political Sciences and recognized with numerous international titles.

In 1997, Pope John Paul II went to pray at Dr. Lejeune’s tomb. The Polish Pontiff had appointed the doctor the first president of the Pontifical Academy for Life.

Four and a half years after the opening of the cause of canonization of Dr. Lejeune (June 28, 2007), and 18 years after his death, the diocesan process has ended.

«It is an important first step as it marks the end of the informative process. At this stage, there is no conclusion on the part of the Church because the qualitative study of the life and virtues will be carried out in the framework of the Roman process, which will begin after the close of the diocesan process,» specified Father Jean-Charles Nault, postulator of the cause.

«Numerous testimonies of prayer for the beatification of Jérôme Lejeune come to us from all over the world, sent by families who knew him, as well as by a new generation of young people involved in the Service of Life and of wise men happy to manifest that there is no contradiction between faith and science,» explained Mayté Varaut, president of the Association of Friends of Professor Jérôme Lejeune.

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On the Net:

Biography of Lejeune, written by his daughter:

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