Henri Grouès, also known as Abbé Pierre, is born on 5 August in Lyon.
Renounces by notarial act his share of the family patrimony and distributes his possessions to charities. Enters the Capuchin Order.
Ordained as priest on 14 August.
The day after the “Vél d’Hiv” raid in Paris, Abbé Pierre helps Jews who escaped the first roundup to flee to the unoccupied zone.
Goes underground: joins the Resistance, forms resistance groups that would later become part of the “Armée du Vercors”.
Arrested by the German army at Cambo-les-Bains (Pyrénées). Escapes by crossing Spain and leaves from Gibraltar for Algiers.
17 June: first meeting with General de Gaulle, in Algiers.
Deputy for the Meurthe-et-Moselle Department. Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Mouvement Universel pour une Confédération Mondiale.
Together with André Philippe, deputy, he files a bill to recognise objection on moral or religious grounds to serve in the armed forces. He begins construction (often illegal) of shelters for homeless families and takes in a homeless man, Georges: this event leads him to create the first Emmaus community (Neuilly-Plaisance).
A woman with a baby freezes to death in January and, in February, Abbé Pierre launches an appeal on RTL radio: this leads to an “uprising of kindness” in Paris and the provinces. During that extremely cold winter, Abbé Pierre asks the Parliament for 1 milliard francs, which is initially refused. Three weeks later, the Parliament unanimously agrees to grant him not 1 milliard but 10 milliard in credits to immediately construct 12,000 emergency shelters for the most underprivileged across the country.
Sets up the Emmaus SA HLM of the Union nationale d’aide aux sans-logis (a national organisation helping homeless people), which will become the Confédération Générale du Logement (a tenant association), as well as the Emmaus Association in Paris.
The magazine “Faims et Soifs” (hunger and thirst) is launched.
First general assembly of Emmaus International in Bern (Switzerland), which adopts the Universal Manifesto of the Emmaus movement.
Abbé Pierre is made an Officer of the Legion of Honour, for human rights activities.
Food Bank launched in France by Emmaus, the Secours Catholique and the Salvation Army.
Emmaus France is created grouping together all the Emmaus communities in France.
December: Commander of the Legion of Honour, for his involvement with housing.
Creation of the Fondation Abbé Pierre pour le logement des Défavorisés, whose public interest was recognised in 1992.
Abbé Pierre refuses to wear the Legion of Honour’s insignia.
Pentecost: fasts in the Saint Joseph church in Paris, together with those who lost their battle to receive refugee status and who stage a hunger strike in protest of the general indifference.
Abbé Pierre solicits the Prime Minister, Pierre Bérégovoy, to create the “Haut comité pour le logement des personnes défavorisées” (an executive committee for the housing of the underprivileged). It is created by decree in December.
In Paris, Abbé Pierre is with the families evicted from the place de la Réunion (20th), avenue René Coty (14th), rue du Dragon (15th) and in the church of St-Bernard (11th).
On 1 February, Abbé Pierre launches his new appeal on RTL: “Enough indifference. This is war! A defensive war against the misery that affects all of mankind (…)”
Each year, Abbé Pierre awards the prize “Une Ville Pour Tous” (one city for all) to three municipalities that have carried out innovative social housing projects.
On 15 March, the Fondation Abbé Pierre publishes its first report on the state of inadequate housing in France.
Abbé Pierre begins a tour of France, visiting the inadequately housed and the homeless with the Fondation Abbé Pierre.
Abbé Pierre demands that a law be passed against exclusions, which is later enacted. His housing plan is abundantly financed by contributions from the Foundation.
Named Grand Officer of the Legion of Honour by the President of the French Republic.
Abbé Pierre inaugurates the first two Pensions de Famille, in Woippy (57) and Marseille (13).
Awarded the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour by Jacques Chirac, President of the French Republic.
In February, 50 years since Abbé Pierre took up his cause: at the Sorbonne, when presenting the report on inadequate housing, Abbé Pierre pleads with the politicians and asks that social housing construction be restarted.
On 24 January, Abbé Pierre goes to the National Assembly to plead that the deputies discuss Article 55 of the loi Solidarité et Renouvellement Urbain (solidarity and urban renewal law).
Abbé Pierre dies on 22 January.