Born July 12, 1751, Julie is baptized on the day of her birth. Gifted with a lively mind, Julie quickly learns to read and write at the village school directed by her uncle, Thibault Guilbert. Raised by her devoutly Christian parents, she discovers God’s love at a very young age. Julie knows her catechism by heart and likes to gather her little companions around her in order to explain it to them.
At nine years of age, Father Dangicourt grants Julie the rare permission to receive her first communion.
At 14 years of age, Julie consecrates herself to the Lord by the vow of perpetual chastity.
At 16 years of age, her family is devastated by thieves who carry off all their merchandise. To help her family, Julie labors with the workers in the fields to whom she speaks of God.
At 23 years of age, Julie is conversing with her father when a large rock is thrown through the window and a shot is fired. Neither Julie nor her father is hit but this attack extremely frightens a young woman whose body is already overworked, thereby provoking a serious illness.
At 31 years of age when an epidemic occurs, inexperienced doctors of the era think they can cure her by bleeding her feet. The village surgeon submits Julie to many such bleedings so that eventually Julie loses the use of her legs and is confined to bed for the next 22 years.
On her sickbed, Julie pursues her work of catechesis, prays for long periods, welcomes benefactors such as the Countess Baudoin of Paris; Madame de Pont-l’Abbé of Gournay and Madame Hérault of Séchelles who chooses Julie to distribute her alms.
Three small reliquaries venerated by Julie. They were kept in Saint Julie's family at Cuvilly. Until the Second Vatican Council, the veneration of relics of the saints was held in great esteem in the Church. The reliquary of Our Lady was offered to our Reverend Mère Aimée de Jesus by Mrs. Chapel, half-sister of Mr. Norbert Billiart Jr., on April 6, 1890. It had been given by Mère Julie, then at Amiens, to her brother Louis-François. The latter gave it to the young widow of his son, Norbert, when she came to live in Cuvilly after the death of her husband (principal of the secondary school at Nemours), with her son, Norbert, who was 6 weeks old. The widow of Norbert Billiart Jr., having remarried a Mr. Chaband, a former officer in the Legion of Honour, left this precious family heirloom to her daughter, Anna, who married Mr. Chapel and who herself gave us these details along with the reliquary. Mère Julie gave the round reliquary, on the eve of her death, to Sister Eulalie, who loved her like her mother and who was also loved by Julie.
Relic of Saint Julie, virgin and martyr (IVth-Vth century). Her feast is May 22. She is Julie Billiart's patron saint.
These little scissors belonged to Julie. In order to take care of her needs and those of her parents, she made linens and lace for the Church.
This banner was embroidered by Julie at Cuvilly.
Julie used this foot-warmer, especially during her long illness. After her healing it was preserved by her niece Félicité, who sent it to Namur in 1853, for the half century of the Institute. The father of the ‘abbé’ Lory, parish priest at Cuvilly, came to Namur in 1899 and testified to having seen such a foot-warmer used by the people of Picardie. They were called "moines". By means of tongs, a red-hot piece of iron was inserted, and then the opening was closed by means of an iron stopper.
Strainer used by Julie.