A YOUTH MINISTRY SHAPED BY MARY AS MODEL OF FAITH

Fr. Lubowicki shows how the early ministry of the young priest with the youth was conscious of the presence of Mary.

On April 25, 1813, Eugene founded the Association for Christian Youth, sixteen months after his ordination. The rules and statutes that he wrote are filled with Marian thinking From the very first lines, it is stated that the society in question is one “established under the intercession of the Immaculate Conception of the most Holy Virgin”.

Eugene got his young people in the habit of seeing in Mary the Mother of Jesus and “ours as well”, a mother filled with tenderness, who in virtue of this title desires “to cooperate in [our] salvation”. In the Association, “public declaration was made to honor and love” Mary with “unbounded filial tenderness”. There is a clear idea of what love is: the trust that leads to a total surrender of oneself into the hands of the person who is loved. That is why it states that the association members “openly declare the most complete devotion [to Mary]”.

The highest point in this devotion to Mary is reached in the recommendation to “consecrate oneself […] to the Most Holy Trinity [..] through the intercession of the Mary Immaculate, the most holy Virgin”. For Eugene, consecrating oneself “to the Most Holy Trinity” is the most basic way of following Mary, totally dedicated to the Trinity and available for the plan of salvation. On the other hand, consecrating oneself “through the intercession [of Mary]” is the fullest expression of our trust in her because this attitude is born of the certainty that the Holy Virgin will not keep us to herself, but will offer us to God! (Corinthians 3:21b-23).

C. Lubowicki, “Mary” in the Dictionary of Oblate Values, http://www.omiworld.org/dictionary.asp?v=9&ID=1056&let=M&pag=4

Today, this attitude finds its place in our Oblate Rule of Life:

“With Mary Immaculate, the faithful handmaid of the Lord, and under the guidance of the Spirit, we enter into closer union with Jesus Christ. We will contemplate with her the mysteries of the Incarnate Word, especially in praying the rosary.”   CC&RR, Constitution 36

 

“So let no one boast about human leaders. For all things are yours, whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or the present or the future—all belong to you, and you belong to Christ, and Christ belongs to God.” 1 Corinthians 3:21-23

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One Response to A YOUTH MINISTRY SHAPED BY MARY AS MODEL OF FAITH

  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    I find myself struggling with some of the words this morning. I am distracted, unfocused and aimless; no amount of returning to this place seems to help. Unable to concentrate on much I feel that I “should” be able to do better. I am bereft of any comfort and there is an air of aridity surrounding me which leaves me feeling painfully fruitless. I read over and over what has been shared above hoping that some of it will be ‘absorbed’, will ‘sink in’. Perhaps at some of it will come to mind later in the day. I am uncomfortable with myself this morning but unable to figure out why.

    This time as I read I pause at the words “a clear idea of what love is: the trust that leads to a total surrender of oneself into the hands of the person who is loved.” Perhaps that is all that I am capable of at this time. I turn to Mary, to Maman, to hold on to me, and I to her. I find myself at the foot of the cross unable to look away, but I am not alone, with Mary beside me I will stand and draw strength from her. St. Eugene pray for me.

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