Our present reflection on the letter to the person who wished to join the Missionaries in 1819 is important. In it Eugene sums up the heart of the Missionary vocation after three years of lived experience and reflection.

The fundamental model, or blueprint, that they were following would never be changed. Their entire missionary existence was based on that of Jesus and the apostles. The pattern of the relationship of each one with Jesus, their relationships between themselves, and their missionary goals and methods had to be those of Jesus and his disciples as described in the Gospels and in the Acts of the Apostles.

The missionary, being specifically called to the apostolic ministry, should aim at perfection. The Lord destines him to show forth anew, amongst those of his own time, the marvellous things that were done of old by the first preachers of the Gospel.
He ought then to walk in their footsteps while being firmly persuaded that the miracles he must do are not the effect of his eloquence but of the grace of the Almighty who will communicate himself through him with all the more abundance if he is more virtuous, more humble, or, to say it all in one word, more holy

Letter to M. Viguier, 6 January 1819, O.W. VI n 38

 The blueprint continues unchanged until today:

The community of the Apostles with Jesus is the model of our life. Our Lord grouped the Twelve around him to be his companions and to be sent out as his messengers (cf. Mk 3:14).

CC&RR, Constitution 3


The apostles were moved, not so much by an intellectual apprehension, as by a spiritual illumination. They met men, and the need of those men whom they met cried aloud to them.     Roland Allen

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  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    I come here every day, for a time of learning and reflecting – about Eugene, about Oblates and about myself. This is my fourth time today that I have returned to this site and my reaction is the same as it was the first time I read it. Scary – I can actually understand what Eugene is saying. More of that “letting go” – no warm and fuzzies and a feeling that I need/can do nothing but to let go before I will know I can continue on. Mark’s words of “being sent” – scary. To be so open to see and accept the need – even scarier.

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