Father René Laurentin collection
Scope and Contents
This collection contains the course materials, lectures, manuscripts, and published articles of French theologian, Father René Laurentin. The course materials date from 1966 through 2003 and cover Catholic theology and Mariology. They were developed primarily for the Marian summer institutes and International Marian Research Institute at the University of Dayton in Dayton, Ohio. The collection contains copies of the French draft, written by Laurentin, and the English translation. These materials were translated from the French by Brother William Fakovec, S.M., librarian at the University of Dayton's Marian Library.
The collection includes Laurentin’s 1992 manuscript, From Secularization to Consecration. Other writings in the collection include conference papers, published articles, and regular columns written by Laurentin. These documents date from 1948 through 2002 and are primarily in French. The collection also contains some personal correspondence related to Laurentin’s teaching and writing.
Several Catholic and Marian topics are covered in the collection. They include, for example, Mariology, Marian apparitions, Mary and the Church, Mary in scripture, Mary in the Liturgy, ecumenism, Charismatic Renewal, and Mary in the mystical tradition.
- Creation: 1948-2003
The materials are in French and English.
This collection is open and available to the public for research in the Marian Library reading room. The materials are non-circulating.
The materials in this collection may be protected by copyright law (Title 17, U.S. Code). The materials are available for personal, educational, and scholarly use. It is the responsibility of the researcher to locate and obtain permission from the copyright owner or his or her heirs for any other use, such as reproduction and publication.
Biography of René Laurentin
René Laurentin was born October 19, 1917 in Tours, France. He is the son of Maurice Laurentin and Marie Jactel. He attended secondary school at Sainte-Marie de Cholet. In 1934 Laurentin entered the Carmelite Seminary at the Catholic University of Paris. In 1938 he obtained two degrees: a Licentiate of Philosophy with a focus on the work of Saint Thomas Aquinas and a Licentiate of Letters - Philosophy from the Sorbonne.
Later, called to serve in the French army during World War II, he was taken as a prisoner of war in Belgium in May of 1940 and spent five years in detention at Oflag 4D in Germany.
After his return, he was ordained to the priesthood on December 8, 1946. He went on to obtain a Doctor of Letters from the Sorbonne in 1952 and a Doctor of Theology from the Institute Catholique in 1953 (cum laude singulari prorsus). That same year Laurentin published Court traité de théologie mariale, and would later publish five successive editions. He was asked to study the theology of Lourdes for the International Marian Congress in Rome in 1954 and published Sens de Lourdes later that year.
In 1955, Laurentin was nominated to serve in the Pontifical International Marian Academy (l'Académie pontificale mariale internationale). Also in 1955, he was appointed Professor of Theology at the Catholic University of Angers. In the early 1960s he served as a consultant to the Preparatory Theological Commission of the Second Vatican Council and authored parts of the Marian doctrine in the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church of Vatican II. He also served as a correspondent for Le Figaro, where he contributed editorials on the Council and the election of Pope Paul VI. In 1981 the Vatican authorized Laurentin to study the writings of Yvonne-Aimée de Malestroit (Yvonne Beauvais) who was under consideration by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints.
Laurentin has served on the theology faculty at the University of Florence and the University of Milan and has served as a visiting professor at several universities in Europe and North America. From the 1970s through the early 2000s, he taught courses for the Marian Summer Institutes and the International Marian Research Institute (founded 1975) at the University of Dayton. Laurentin also served as Vice President of the French Mariological Society (Société française d’études mariales) from 1962-1997.
He has received various awards and distinctions including the Marian Award of 1963 from the University of Dayton (1964), the Wlodzimierz Pietrzak Literary Award (1974), Italy’s National Catholic Culture Award (1996), Officer of the Legion of Honor (2002), and many other awards for his writing and contributions to Catholicism and Mariology.
Laurentin is widely recognized as an expert in the field of Mariology and is the author of over 100 works and numerous scholarly articles. His writings, translated in many languages, cover a range of topics on Marian apparitions including Lourdes and Medjugorje; visionaries and mystics including Bernadette Soubirous, Thérèse de Lisieux, Catherine Labouré, and Yvonne-Aimée de Malestroit; as well as biblical exegesis, theology, and Vatican II.
Laurentin died on September 10, 2017 in Evry, a suburb of Paris, at the age of 99.
10.5 Linear Feet (21 document cases)
This collection contains the course materials, lectures, manuscripts, and published articles of French theologian, Father René Laurentin. Documents in the collection date from 1948 through 2003 and cover Catholic theology and Mariology. Course materials in the collection were developed primarily for the Marian summer institutes and International Marian Research Institute at the University of Dayton from circa 1966 through 2003. Course materials in English were translated from the French by Brother William Fackovec, S.M. The collection also includes Laurentin’s 1992 manuscript, “From Secularization to Consecration” as well as conference papers, published articles, and regular columns written by Laurentin. Additionally, the collection contains some personal correspondence related to Laurentin’s teaching and writing.
A wide variety of Catholic and Marian topics are covered in the collection, for example, Marian apparitions, Mary and the Church, Mary in scripture, Mary in the Liturgy, ecumenism, Charismatic Renewal, and Mary in the mystical tradition.
This collection contains two series:
- Series 1: Course materials and lectures, 1964-2003
- Series 2: Writings, 1948-circa 2007
- Guide to the Father René Laurentin collection, 1948-2003
- Jillian Slater
- June 2015
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- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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- Marian Library