In using his retreat to reflect on his ministry, Eugene used books to

seek advice to better realize the principles.
Blessed Liguori and Blessed Leonard of Port Maurice contributed most to these precious readings. I was consoled to go over again the principal traits of the latter’s life,
remembering that about eight or nine years ago the same reading moved me to abundant tears, and probably passed on to me without my perceiving it, the spirit that drew me on shortly afterwards, i.e., about three years, to follow the same career, at least to carry out the same ministry as him

Retreat notes, May 1824, EO XV n. 156

Both Alphonsus Liguori and Leonard of Port Maurice had been mission preachers of the Gospel to the poor in Italy and had become models for Eugene’s approach to preaching to the most abandoned.

Who are the persons who have inspired and transformed me to follow their example of service?


That’s all a man can hope for during his lifetime – to set an example – and when he is dead, to be an inspiration for history.”   William McKinley

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  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    I really sat and took note of this today – Eugene writing of how he was moved and inspired by Blessed Liguori and Blessed Leonard of Port Maurice and how moved he had been, unaware at the time of the depth of the effect that they had on him. This from the very man, St Eugene himself whose very words to Henri Tempier moved me so deeply. Certainly I had been ‘chasing after’ God and a way of living for a long time but to be presented with it so clearly and with such an invitation. A huge “wow” moment in my life for sure. And it was – always – followed by transformation (when I was open to allowing that to happen). I spent a long time this morning looking at images of so many in my life time who have inspired me and had a profound effect on my life. It was a joy simply to take the time and honour them in my heart and this has been a gentle reminder of just how much God has blessed me and looked after me.

    And still even as I write this I am aware of the many people I meet each day and whom I surround myself with, the ones I am drawn to right now in my everyday life. Frank asked “Who are the persons who have inspired and transformed me to follow their example of service?” I have never really thought about inspiration and transformation together like that. But upon reflection I see how that is exactly what seems to happen. God seems to put an abundance of people like that in my path every single day – they will some of them be small “wow” moments – so noticeable and other times they will be soft quiet “ahhh” moments. Having just come back from a retreat where I met and was able to spend a few days talking and sharing with people whose very goodness and beauty inspired and truly transformed me. There are my friends and family whose beauty inspire and transform me in simply how I to become all that I can be. There are the people who I meet in my job and in my ministry, they too have that effect on me. Even those whom I am privileged to serve and minister – am not sure about the inspiration part but they certainly transform me, for with them I become a little more compassionate, with them my heart stretches and grows.

    There are certainly books (as in stories and writings of some persons) who inspire me and so transform. But it is more in the people themselves. At the base, the root of all of this certainly is my God, our God, my God (deeply shared and communal while at the same time being utterly and totally personal). It sounds like I am falling in love with everyone I meet – and there is a little truth in that. So as I reflect, I am filled with gratitude for all who touch me – with great big “wow” moments and the little “ahh” moments. I become transformed, changed and healed by so many. I was told that “Namaste” means the God in me greets the God in you. That is the word that that I find myself thinking about this morning. Namaste.

  2. Jack Lau, OMI says:

    Great question.
    Regarding book and author I immediately thought of Satish Kumar, “You are therefore I Am. I have read the book often and it inspires me still though I so far from the the integrity of the author-sage.

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