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...a sweatshop of moxie

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Meet France's Mother Teresa

He was voted Top 10 Frenchmen of all time in a recent poll, and yet few people outside France know about L'Abbé Pierre, who turns 93 today.

His claim to fame isn't so much the founding of an Order to care for the lost and indigent of his city, as the late Albanian Mother Teresa was known for, but to be the champion of homeless waifs everywhere.

Hiver 54, a film which came out in 1989, recounts this priest's j'accuse-like open letter to the French government in 1954, where he implored the State to do more for the homeless during the glacial winter of said year.

Adults and chldren both were dying in the streets, and his cri-de-coeur stroke a chord with the post-WWII French.

His letter was published in all newspapers, and he became a spiritual leader sorely missing in much of Western European society today.

His foundation, Les Chiffoniers d'Emmaus, or "The Ragpickers of Emmaus", is active to this day -- a rarity in foundation-shy, State-run French society.

Check the film out, you'll definitely like it. And hey, it's not only feel good, but see-good, as it stars the scrumptious Claudia Cardinale.

Now, casting Mother Teresa in a biopic might be a tad more difficult.

What is Linda Hunt doing these days?


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