Founder of The Society of The Divine Saviour
Father Francis Mary of the Cross (John Baptist) Jordan was born on June 16, 1848 in the small village of Gurtweil in the state of Baden in Germany. He was baptized with the name John Baptist. From the early years of his life he felt called to the priesthood; however, due to the poverty of his family he was not able to undergo proper education and had to undertake different jobs. He worked mainly as a painter and decorator. Ultimately, thanks to the indispensable help of his educators and benefactors, he was able to fulfill his dream and become a priest.
During his studies he had a desire to start an organization that would gather Catholic potential and defend and spread faith. After his ordination to the priesthood, due to the anti-catholic legislation of the Kulturkampf, he was not able to undertake pastoral work in Germany. Therefore he moved to Rome to study oriental languages. He went for a trip to the Near East to improve his knowledge of those languages. During his pilgrimage to the Holy Land he devoted much time to personal prayer and meditation. After his return, in August 1880, he received the consent and blessing of Pope Leo XIII to found the three-grade Apostolic Teaching Society. The first grade of the Society was officially started on December 8, 1881.
Father Jordan’s plans developed and found their realization in the Society of the Divine Savior (for men) and the Congregation of the Sisters of the Divine Savior (for women). He dedicated the rest of his life to the development of his work. He himself founded many communities in Europe and in both Americas and agreed as well for the Salvatorians to take on a mission in Assam, India. From the very beginning, his Society has had the characteristic of universality and has striven to proclaim the Savior with all the ways and means that the love of God may inspire, so that all people may know and love Him. Fr. Jordan died in Tafers, Switzerland on September 8, 1918.
His cause for Beatification is open.