Fr. Augustine Planque
Augustine was born in 1826 in Chemy, a little village in the North of France, into a modest family of small landowners. He entered the seminary at a very young age and was ordained priest in 1850. He always had a deep desire within him: to be a missionary.
With the SMA
In 1856 the missionary Bishop de Marion Brésillac sent out an appeal: he was looking for available priests to leave for the most abandoned and difficult countries in Africa to proclaim the Gospel.
This missionary project gave Fr. Planque the opportunity to realize his dream: he would be one of the first members of the SMA (Society of African Missions) founded by Bishop de Brésillac.
In 1859, three years after SMA was founded, Bishop de Brésillac, the Founder, died in Sierra Leone. In France only two seminarians and two priests remained, one of whom was Augustine Planque. At the age of 33, Fr. Planque accepted the responsibility of Superior General to continue the work begun by Bishop de Brésillac.
In 1876 he founded the Institute of the Sisters of Our Lady of Apostles for the evangelization and formation of women and Christian families.
For almost fifty years, he devoted his life to the cause of missionary vocations, ensuring the formation of seminarians and novices, working tirelessly seeking funding to support the missions and organizing the missions entrusted to the SMA and OLA in Africa.
To the End
Fr. Augustine Planque died on 21st August, 1907.
All his energies were devoted to the Society of African Missions and the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Apostles. It is through them that he lived his lifelong passion for mission “ad gentes”.