Father Moreau began to experience severe pains on the night of January 1, 1873 while serving in the parish at Ivré Lévêque . He managed to return to Le Mans on January 4th and the doctor convinced him to leave his cold room for a heated one in the house. He resigned himself to be bedridden and never complained or was impatient. He was very grateful for the least help he received. On the 17th he received Viaticum followed on the next day by the Anointing of the Sick and the apostolic blessing.

"Sunday, January 19, the end was near. Father Charles Moreau, Mother Mary of Seven Dolors and three other Sisters spent the night at his bedside. Toward morning his breathing became difficult and at nine-thirty his agony, which was more like a falling asleep, began. The sick man seemed to be conscious and to hear the voices that prayed for him to Jesus, Mary and Joseph, the angels and the saints, especially those that he so often invoked during his long earthly pilgrimage, namely Saints Basil, Anthony, Vincent de Paul ... .

Toward twelve-thirty, his breathing became imperceptible, his soul seemed to light up his countenance with a calm and serene beauty. The chaplain, after a last blessing, bent down to give the kiss of peace to him who was on his way to eternal happiness.

The death of the one whose whole life had been spent in union with God is the fixing of a state of being, an ecstasy becomes permanent in the Lord. For a long time Basil had ardently desired this eternal face-to-face meeting with the Lord. Nothing counted any longer in his eyes but this absolute peace. Emptied of all that is earthly, he was overwhelmed by God." (Henri-Paul Bergeron, CSC, Basil Moreau, Congregation of Holy Cross, Rome, 198,pp. 187-1885)

 

 

 

Father Basil Anthony Mary Moreau died at the age of 74.

He was buried in the Sister's Cemetery.

In 1938, his remains were moved to the crypt of Holy Cross Church which he had built. On this occasion, Fr. Albert Cousinau, the fifth Superior General of Holy Cross spoke the following sobering words:

 

 

 

"I wish to declare before these sacred remains that we, his children--priests, brothers and sisters--recognized him as our worthy founder who, having been humiliated and cruelly tried by unjust treatment, has given fruitfulness to the Congregation of Holy Cross through his tears and sacrifices. We ask pardon for all the injustice, abandonment, and perhaps treason which he had to suffer at our hands." (Gary MacEOIN, Father Moreau, Founder of Holy Cross, The Bruce Pub., Co., Milwaukee, 1962, p. 187)

17. Destined to Glory