ALL MY STEPS, ALL MY PROPOSALS, SEEMED GUIDED BY A SUPERNATURAL LIGHT WHICH LED ME TO DO AND SAY PRECISELY WHAT WAS NECESSARY

The long-awaited goal of the papal approval of the Oblate Congregation was on the point of being achieved. The board of cardinals had voted positively and all that was needed was the signature of the Pope. Eugene writes to Henri Tempier to share his joy and gratitude

Let us acknowledge that the conduct of divine Providence in this matter has been admirable and that none of us should ever become oblivious of how evident his protection has been.

He then shows how conscious he was of God’s guiding presence in the affair.

Perhaps never in matters like this has anyone seen hearts, of which God has decidedly shown himself to be master, disposed as they have been.
First, that of the Sovereign Pontiff, and then that of everyone who has had to deal with this matter. All my steps, all my proposals seemed guided by a supernatural light which led me to do and say precisely what was necessary to please, to persuade. One could say of me, as of Esther, in regard to each of those with whom I had to deal: Placuit ei et invenit gratiam in conspectu illius.[ Esther 2:9 “She pleased him and won his favor.”] It is true that I have always put all my confidence in the goodness of God.

Letter to Henri Tempier, 16 February 1826, EO VII n 224

 

“Through the humbling dispensations of Divine Providence, men are sometimes fitted for his service.”       John Woolman

 

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One Response to ALL MY STEPS, ALL MY PROPOSALS, SEEMED GUIDED BY A SUPERNATURAL LIGHT WHICH LED ME TO DO AND SAY PRECISELY WHAT WAS NECESSARY

  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    “One could say of me, as of Esther, in regard to each of those with whom I had to deal: Placuit ei et invenit gratiam in conspectu illius.[ Esther 2:9 “She pleased him and won his favor.”] It is true that I have always put all my confidence in the goodness of God.”

    Last summer on retreat I found myself listening to a man whose very foundation was rooted in scripture. When speaking of himself, of all of us, of the Church, he was able to demonstrate how he, how we, have our being and are rooted in scripture, and although he did not ‘quote’ the scripture endlessly he was able to turn to the books, the chapters and verses in both the Old and New Testaments with ease. There was a startling and wonderful reality in all of it. That intimate experience of scripture in one’s life. I am reminded of that this morning as I read and ponder on Eugene’s letter to Henri Tempier. He quoted from Esther to explain his experience in working with the Cardinals, the focus of his time in Rome, adding it was because of his trust in God – his continuing giving of his all to God. Here was the fruits of his being. And he recognized that God was pleased with him for although he quote Esther in response to his dealings with the cardinals his next line tied it all in with God.

    On the weekend I facilitated a small video workshop of a few hours, by bringing together a group of people to listen to a Rolheiser video on the Eucharist, having them discuss and share their experiences of what they heard and how that fit in their lives. I trusted that God would give each of them what they needed and God did just that of course. My part was very little but in a way I did as Eugene did when he wrote: “All my steps, all my proposals seemed guided by a supernatural light which led me to do and say precisely what was necessary to please, to persuade.” Different and not as breathtaking, but who knows – those small things that I did made it possible for some others to receive a gift in what they heard and experienced. God inspired me to set that up and offer it to others for it had given me so much. Not quite the effort expended by Eugene, but not a lot different, for in a small way I trusted and put my confidence in God that what needed to be done and said would be so that those who attended would be filled.

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