Saint Julie Billiart led an exceptional faith life through prayer. Followers of the faith often admire her sincere, quiet and interior devotion to God. At just 7 years old, she memorized the entire catechism by heart. Her spiritual progress was recognized in the town of Cuvilly, and she was allowed to take her First Communion early. She went on to take a vow of chastity at 14 years old.
When she was 22 years old, Saint Julie Billiart suffered a wound as the result of a fire shot by one of her father’s enemies. She became paralyzed, but this physical paralysis did not stop her from expressing her faith. She continued to teach catechism to young children in the village, and she would often pray for up to 5 hours a day.
In 1803, Saint Julie Billiart devoted her lifework to the education of young girls and began the Institute of Notre Dame. She recovered from her paralysis this same year. Saint Julie Billart is known for being a patron against poverty and bodily illness. She was canonized in 1969.