Peter Donders, beatified 41 years ago


Today, 23 May, we commemorate the beatification of Peter Donders in 1982.

On 14 May, in Tilburg, in the pavilion of the Peerke Donders Park, after a much appreciated exhibition on slavery, a new exhibition was opened: Tilburg – the Rome of the Netherlands? It aims to promote knowledge of the religious heritage of Tilburg, which can be found everywhere in the city, but whose significance is lost to many people today. The Petrus Donders Tilburg Foundation, which manages the park, always seeks a balance between culture and cult, although it distinguishes them, almost literally, into the pavilion/museum and the chapel. Of course, one has to know about the culture of the 19th century to understand the life of Blessed Peter Donders and his work in Surinam, which is dealt with in the pavilion. Yet Peter Donders without cult, his and our relationship with God, would not be Blessed Peter Donders C.Ss.R., for whose intercession prayers are still offered in the chapel every Tuesday.

Let us hope that the memory of Blessed Peter Donders will never be reduced to mere culture, but will always include an act of cult, concerning a man whose faith and charity are exemplary, and that this will someday contribute to his canonisation.

Claudia Peters, 
vice-postulator Causae Petri Donders C.Ss.R.,

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