Monthly Archives: July 2019

THE MISFORTUNE OF SO MANY FAMILIES TOUCHES ME DEEPLY

Eugene was no longer in Marseilles and his first instinct was to rush back to the city because the cholera had spread from Toulon and Aix to the city. Father Tempier wrote: “The Bishop [Fortuné] really would like you to … Continue reading

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I AM IN SUCH ANGUISH TO KNOW THAT YOU ARE ONCE AGAIN IN THE DANGER-ZONE

The cholera epidemic ended suddenly in Marseilles in April 1835 after having ravaged the city for 111 days. Three months later it broke out in the nearby harbor city of Toulon with multiple deaths each day. Two Oblates in Aix … Continue reading

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SO NOT FOR ME THE MUCH-DESIRED PALM OF THE MARTYRDOM OF CHARITY

For Eugene, oblation meant being prepared to give one’s life for Jesus -especially at the service of others. He had prayed for this oblational martyrdom from the time of his priestly ordination. I will give you my news in brief. … Continue reading

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A PRACTICAL RESPONSE TO THE EFFECTS OF THE CHOLERA EPIDEMIC

Eugene’s biographer, Rey, describes something that we will see regularly in the future: Eugene’s ability to identify a group of people who were “the most abandoned” and to take practical steps to rectify the cause. In this case the group … Continue reading

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GOD HAS BEEN GLORIFIED IN THE PUBLIC PRAYERS WE PRESCRIBED.

Cholera had ravaged Marseilles for 111 days with a death toll of thousands. God has been glorified in the public prayers we prescribed. The doctors were forecasting a frightful recurrence of the disease, and instead, as if to mock their … Continue reading

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MY HEART BURSTS AMID THIS VERY WONDERFUL DEVOTION

While assisting those who were suffering so greatly, Eugene and his uncle, Bishop Fortuné, arranged to focus the attention of the people of Marseilles on concentrated prayer. The population had a special devotion to the small sanctuary of Notre Dame … Continue reading

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THE PEOPLE LIKE TO COME TO THE MISSIONARIES IN THEIR NEED

We have had to bring immediate relief to the most urgent cases. In some parishes, like La Major and St. Laurent, the clergy were at the end of their tether. I have given two Missionaries to St. Laurent. Calvaire is … Continue reading

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I MUST GIVE AN EXAMPLE OF A HOLY COURAGE

At the height of the epidemic, Eugene described the situation in Marseilles: My dear Son, the demands made on us increase by the day. It was two hours past midnight before I got to bed yesterday. We are in a … Continue reading

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MY PLACE IS HERE

By February 1835, the cholera outbreak had become an epidemic. At the height of the epidemic Rey gives the average number of deaths of people in their houses as at least 83 each day, without counting those who had been … Continue reading

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WHATSOEVER YOU DO TO ONE OF THESE, YOU DO IT TO ME

In 1832 there had been an initial outbreak of cholera in Marseilles while Eugene was in Rome to be made Bishop of Icosia. Fearing that it would lead to epidemic proportions, Eugene approached the Pope to grant a series of … Continue reading

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