Marc Sangnier

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A medallion commemorating Sangnier

Marc Sangnier (French: [sɑ̃gnje]; 3 April 1873, Paris – 28 May 1950, Paris) was a French Roman Catholic thinker and politician, who in 1894 founded le Sillon ("The Furrow"), a socialist Catholic movement.


Sangnier aimed to bring the Catholic Church into a greater conformity with French Republican ideals and to provide an alternative to anticlerical labour movements, the movement was initially successful, but was eventually condemned by Pope Pius X in the letter Notre charge apostolique in 1910. A plaque however in the garden of the Marc Sangnier Institute in Boulevard Raspail recalls the visit some years later of Cardinal Ceretti, the emissary of Pope Benedict XV; in 1912 Sangnier founded a replacement group, the Young Republic League to promote his vision of social Catholicism.

Sangnier founded a newspaper, La Démocratie, which campaigned for equality for women, proportional representation at elections, and for pacifism, he was also one of the pioneers of the French youth-hostelling movement. In 1928 he employed the 19-year-old Émilien Amaury in his first job, from which he went on to found the Amaury publishing empire.[1]


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