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Grand Coteau/Baton Rouge

RSCJ in Grand Coteau Honor St. John Berchmans

The connection between Religious of the Sacred Heart of Grand Coteau and St. John Berchmans is deep and time-tested and blessed.

On Sunday, August 17, several RSCJ attended the blessing of the new high altar relief in the Cathedral of St. John Berchmans in Shreveport, Louisiana. Earlier in the week, on August 13, the anniversary of the death of St. John Berchmans, Father Peter Mangum, of the Cathedral of St. John Berchmans in Shreveport, and Father Felix Van Meerdergen, of Deist, Belgium, had celebrated Mass at the Shrine of St. John Berchmans in Grand Coteau.

Miracle at Grand Coteau

Shrine of St. John Berchmans

Few spots in America have been so unpredictably involved in sacred history as a tiny town situated on what was, some two thousand years ago, the west bank of the Mississippi, not far from where it flows into the Gulf. It is called Grand Coteau, from its situation on a sloping ridge or “coteau” – not a lofty ridge, but a long one. Though a superhighway runs near Grand Coteau, it is still somewhat off the beaten track.

Xavier Murphy, RSCJ, Pioneer Educator in Louisiana

Schools of the Sacred Heart, Grand Coteau

The iconic facade of the Academy of the Sacred Heart in Grand Coteau, Louisiana, (now, with Berchmans Academy, part of Schools of the Sacred Heart) with its long galleries overlooking the formal garden that stretches to the road, stands as the signature of a remarkable Religious of the Sacred Heart, Anna Xavier Murphy, who was superior of the Academy from 1825 to her death in September 1836.