Père Michel de Roton

You are here

He was twice Rector of the Sanctuary of Lourdes: Father de Roton has passed away

Père Michel de Roton à la Grotte de Lourdes

Father Michel de Roton, who was twice Rector of the Sanctuary of Lourdes, passed away in the Retirement Home of Saint-Frai in Tarbes on Saturday 3rd June 2017. He was 85 years of age.

The funeral of Father Michel de Roton took place on Wednesday 7th June at 10.00am in the Cathedral of Tarbes. Let us give thanks to God for his life devoted to the Church, and let us entrust him to the Mercy of the Lord.

Michel de Roton: Key dates

  • 2nd February 1932: he was born in Melun (77).
  • From 1943 to 1950, he studied at Garaison.
  • 21st June 1957, he was ordained to the Priesthood in the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in Lourdes.
  • From 1957 to 1959, he studied theology at the French Seminary in Rome.
  • From 1959 to 1961, in Tarbes, he was Curate in the Parish of Saint-Jean (65) then Chaplain in a Technical College.
  • From 1961 to 1967, he was Professor of Theology in the Great Seminary of Dax (40).
  • From 1967 to 1971, he was Chaplain of the Lycée Marie Curie in Tarbes.
  • From 1971 to 1977, he was Rector of the Sanctuary of Lourdes.
  • From 1977 to 1983, he was Parish Priest in the Parish of Sainte-Bernadette in Tarbes.
  • From 1983 to 1993, he was Diocesan Coordinator for Religious Education.
  • From 1991 to 1993, he was in charge of supporting and accompanying seminarians.
  • From 1993 to 1998, he was Rector of the Sanctuary of Lourdes for the second time.
  • In 1998, he retired to the diocesan house of Saint-Paul in Tarbes.
  • From 2000 to 2013, he was Episcopal Delegate to the Permanent Diaconate.
  • September 2012, he moved to the Retirement Home of Saint-Frai in Tarbes.


Père Michel de Roton

"He always attentive and smiling"

Father André Cabes, the present Rector of the Sanctuary of Lourdes, pays homage to Father de Roton: Michel de Roton has just left us. He was twice Rector of the Sanctuary of Lourdes, which is unusual. In the 1970s, with his team of Chaplains, he directed the mission of the Sanctuary in the light of the Second Vatican Council. Symbolically, it should be noted that it was he who made the gushing spring visible at the back of the Massabielle rock. It was a time of renewal of the liturgy, of the Hospitality, of the reception of pilgrims and in particular the reception of young people. After six years he joined the Parish of Sainte-Bernadette in Tarbes. The little saint continued to accompany him until he was recalled to Lourdes to succeed Fr. Bordes. He became Rector again from 1993 to 1998. It was still a time of transformation with the construction of new Accueils for the sick. He suffered from Parkinson's disease and had to retire to the Diocesan Home of Saint-Paul in Tarbes before being received by the Sisters of Saint-Frai for the last days of his life. He left us on the anniversary of Bernadette's First Communion on 3rd June. Always attentive and smiling, Father de Roton knew how to share the richness of his sensitivity and his deep faith. All those who knew him will remember his testimony of a given life. We pray for him, knowing that, in the Invisible Love, he continues to accompany us.