Jeanne-Marie Chavoin… Foundress of the Marist Sisters Jeanne-Marie Chavoin… was born in France …in the village of Coutouvre 29 August 1786 Part 1: The story of Jeanne-Marie Chavoin began as her country teetered on the brink of revolution. Born in the French village of Coutouvre, north west of Lyon, she and her younger sister, Claudine, were reared by Theodore and Jeanne Chavoin (née Verchère). Her parents proved their fidelity to Catholic faith throughout persecution and were known for their care of the needy, especially those shunned by society. Here Théodore Chavoin set up his tailor’s shop at the back of the home where he and his wife, Jeanne, raised two daughters. The family also took in a poor priest who took the oath of allegiance to the Revolutionary government. Soon after, having regretted his action, he repented and fled to the countryside fearing for his life. The Chavoins cared for Benoît Alex until he died 20 years later. So it was that Jeanne-Marie grew in an atmosphere of practical faith and came to develop what could be termed “hidden holiness”. It was this quality which was later to provide the key to her vocation. But that will come much later in our story. Thanks to Moira Ryan sm our illustrator!