Roger Crouquet wrote the earliest feature article about the story of Bérenger Saunière for the Belgian magazine Le Soir illustré (March 1948, number 819).
Entitled Visite a une ville morte: Rennes-le-Château, autrefois Capitale du Comte de Razès, Aujourd'hui bourgade abandonne (“Visit to a dead village: Rennes-le-Château, former capital of the county of Razès, now an abandoned village”), one villager told Crouquet how Saunière “preferred wine and women to practising the priesthood. At the end of the last century he had a rather original idea. He placed in foreign newspapers, especially in the United States, an advertisement announcing that the poor priest of Rennes-le-Château lived among heretics and had only the most meagre of resources. He moved the Christians of the whole world to such pity by announcing that the old church, an architectural gem, was heading for unavoidable destruction if urgent restoration work was not undertaken as soon as possible.”