Site dedicated to Blessed Eugenie Joubert

"28 years smiling"


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Eugenie JOUBERT (right) was born in Yssingeaux, Haute Loire, on 11 February 1876. She was the 4th in a Christian family of 8 children.

Her infectious cheerfulness is a hallmark of her character, despite the fact that her childhood was marked by the separation of her parents.

Click here to learn more about her family.


From the age of 5, she went to a boarding school with the Ursuline Sisters of Monistrol, where her older sister Marie was already.

She took her First Communion there at the age of 11. She remembered this encounter with Jesus for the rest of her life.

She wrote: "I have retained delicious memories and indelible impressions of Monistrol".

The call of Jesus

At the age of 19, she responded to the call of Jesus by joining the Sisters of the Holy Family of the Sacred Heart.

This congregation was founded on 8 December 1889 (the day of the Immaculate Conception) by Father Louis-Etienne Rabussier S. J. and Mother Marie-Ignace Melin.

Sister Eugénie took her vows on 8 December 1897 in Saint-Denis.

She honours the Blessed Virgin in a special way, preferring the hidden life, like Mary in Nazareth.

Click here to learn more about the congregation of the Sisters of the Holy Family of the Sacred Heart.

Catechesis for the toddlers

Eugénie professed:     "JESUS ONLY".

Her short life was devoted to the catechesis of the very young, the poorest and the most disadvantaged. She carried out this mission first in France, in Aubervilliers, then in Saint-Denis, and finally in Belgium, in Liège (photo here).

 Her apostolate was rooted in her religious life, which radiated union with Jesus and love in the little things:           “SO LONG AS JESUS IS PLEASED”.


She exhausted herself with work, but soon became bedridden: tuberculosis. In the silence of the infirmary, a loving intimacy develops between her and Jesus.

She followed the suffering Christ with love.

Reminder to God

Eugénie died on 2 July 1904 in Liège, Belgium, aged 28, calling out the name of her Beloved.

Her tomb was later transferred to Dinant (Belgium), where the motherhouse of her congregation was located. The site of her tomb in the Saint-Gilles cemetery in Liège (Belgium), marked by a cenotaph, is still venerated.

A variety of chapels were erected in various places in honour of Blessed Eugénie Joubert :

- in France, in the church of Saint-Pierre in Yssingeaux,

- in Belgium, in the church of Saint-Gilles in Liège where the Blessed has been buried in a Chapel dedicated to her since 30 June 2024

- in Italy, in the building that was home to the General House of the Sisters of the Holy Family of the Sacred Heart in Rome.


Sister Eugénie Joubert was beatified in Rome on 20 November 1994 by Pope John Paul II.

"The Kingdom of God starts in the heart of a child. Sister Eugénie understood this, which is why she took such care to prepare the youngest of children for their first confession and first holy communion. From an early age, everyone is called to bear witness to the truth. Without ceasing, the Church will echo the Lord's words: "Let the little children come to me! (Extract from the homily given by Saint John Paul II)

Click here to go to the Beatification Ceremony page

Catechism room in the Saint Gilles parish in Liege, where Sister Eugenie Joubert looked after the children.

The Congregation of the Holy Family of the Sacred Heart

The Congregation of the Holy Family of the Sacred Heart is a religious congregation of female catechists of the pontifical right. It was founded on 8 December 1889 by Father Louis-Etienne Rabussier S. J. and Mother Marie-Ignace Melin.

It was founded on the day of the Immaculate Conception. This Congregation honours the Blessed Virgin in a special way, preferring the hidden life, like Mary in Nazareth.

Its principal rule is to follow Christ in the footsteps of the Gospel. The sisters of the Holy Family of the Sacred Heart practise the apostolate of the interior life, fraternal charity and service to the smallest and poorest. Their main task is to take part in catechesis among the working classes. They are also involved in teaching, charitable and parish work, caring for the sick and the elderly, etc. A secondary school for agricultural education bears the name of Blessed Eugénie Joubert in Yssingeaux (Haute-Loire).


Present in France, in Le Puy-en-Velay (where they were founded), then in Aubervilliers, Paris and Saint-Denis, the sisters left France at the beginning of the 19th century because of anti-congregation laws. They opened communities in Liège and Dinant (Belgium), Rome and Nemi (Italy). In 1919, they began a missionary apostolate in Dahomey (Benin, Africa). At the beginning of 1904, when she was very ill, Blessed Eugénie said: “I’ll go to Africa one day”.

Today, the Congregation is represented by Sister Marie-Catherine and is located in Via delle Vigne Nuove in Rome. Blessed Eugénie Joubert is honoured in a chapel dedicated to her. The premises are occupied by the Missionaries of Divine Revelation.

Eugenie's family

Her parents: Marie-Antonia Celle and Pierre Joubert.

Her brothers and sisters:

Ernest, born 17 April 1868, notary at Tence (Haute-Loire), married to Thérèse Peyrot (died at Châteaucreux station in Saint-Etienne, caught by the train), and secondly to Philomène Viallard.

Marie, born on 13 August 1870, a nun of the Holy Family of the Sacred Heart. She was Superior of the Monastery of Liège where Sister Eugénie died. Later, she was Assistant to the Superior General in Rome.

Laurent, born 11 June 1874 (died young).

Wilfrid, born on 6 May 1878, a doctor in Paris, married to Flore (…). Sister Eugénie loved to have her brothers and sisters to pray, especially the one she called “her” little Wilfrid. After Blessed Eugénie’s death, Wilfrid asked for and received his rosary from the Sisters of the Holy Family of the Sacred Heart, in memory of the dozens of Hail Marys he had recited with Sister Eugénie.

Gabriel, born on 30 December 1879, cafe owner in Yssingeaux, he married Marie Gerphagnon. He had a son who died aged 18. 

Edouard, born 23 December 1882, single, French consul in Auckland, New Zealand.

Antonia, born on 2 June 1885, married Jean-Marie Gaucher; she had four children, two of whom died in infancy.

Antonia and Marie-Antonia





Article paru dans le magazine l’épervier de novembre 2023