At last the long awaited decision of the Pope has arrived!

As I left Saint Andrew’s, I went into the Quirinal palace where Archbishop Marchetti gave me that good news that last night the Pope had approved and confirmed the decision of the Congregation regarding our matter. Te Deum laudamus. Per singulos dies benedicimus te, et laudamus nomen tuum in saeculum saeculi. [ed. You are God: we praise you. Day by day we bless you. We praise your name for ever.]

Roman Diary, 18 February 1826, EO XVII

Giving the long-awaited news to the Oblates in France, Eugene begins by bursting into praise in the words of the Church’s hymn of thanksgiving: the Te Deum.

You are God: we praise you. Throughout the world the holy Church acclaims you. Day by day we bless you. We praise your name for ever.
My dear friend, my dear brothers, on February 17, 1826, yesterday evening, the Sovereign Pontiff Leo XII confirmed the decision of the congregation of Cardinals and specifically approved the Institute, the Rules and Constitutions of the Missionary Oblates of the Most Holy and Immaculate Virgin Mary, and accompanied this solemn act of his pontifical power, with most admiring words for those who happily form this Society from which the head of the Church indeed expects the greatest good.

Letter to Henri Tempier and all the Oblates, 18 February 1826, EO VII n 226

 For us Oblates and members of the Mazenodian family, this decision by the head of the Church confirmed our conviction that our vocation was not born as a result of a human inspiration of Eugene de Mazenod, but that it came from God working though Eugene to bring us into existence.


“When you focus on how wonderful God is and all the great things He’s done… is doing… and even will do in your life, your natural response will be praise, adoration and awe. Don’t let yourself ever get used to it… stay amazed!”     Joyce Meyer

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  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    A day to be amazed and awed. Today we celebrate, with Eugene, with Oblates, with the Church, the approbation of the Oblates. It all happened 200 years ago but with these ongoing reflections and sharings I have found myself waiting with Eugene, going about my daily life, waiting for the time to come. Do we celebrate now? Is there more? For this does not feel like we are quite there yet. In reality we celebrated February 17th, but in another sense I find myself building up to it again.

    It reminds me a little of the season of Lent we are about to enter into. For the past week I have found myself looking forward to, and actively preparing to celebrate Lent, as soon as it begins. Preparing for something that took place 2000 years ago and yet now we prepare to celebrate it all over again, the forty days and nights, our own lived realities and experiences of the temptations and the transfiguration, of the entry in triumph to Jerusalem, the Last and first Supper, the passion and the death, and the triumph over that death with resurrection. Preparation, entering into, celebrating. There is joy and life in my preparations and it is deeper than emotions and feelings. God in us.

    Today is my birthday and I have been looking forward to it for the past few days. No big celebrations or parties, but rather the ordinary of every day with added wonder and joy, awe and amazement.. I look back today on all that God has given me, as well as all that is to come. Waiting, preparing for the ultimate gift of fulfillment with God and living in it now. I am amazed at how it all seems to relate and tie together. Then, now, and to come. All I need to do is just sit in that,

    A wonderfilled day to celebrate with Eugene and Oblates, with Jesus and with all of creation. A day to give thanks for life. A day to give thanks for the gift of Eugene, and for the gift that each one of us is when when we open ourselves to letting God come forth. “You are God: we praise you. Day by day we bless you. We praise your name for ever.”

    • Paul Howard, OMI Associate of Toronto says:

      It is no coincidence (along with your birthday) that Frank’s entry for today is the news of St Eugene receiving the news that the Congregation was approved. Many more years of joy in the Lord and in your role as an associate!!!

  2. Father Joseph Goutier says:

    Happy Birthday Eleanor, thanks for sharing your inspiration, I publish it for the Oblates at Foyer Lacombe.

  3. Paul Howard, OMI Associate of Toronto says:

    Thank you Frank for making this suspense story interesting and instructive for patience, a spirit of prayer throughout the long wait and a conviction that St Eugene had a unique vision to help restore the faith of France. I never realized that a good idea had so many delays and possible pitfalls. PMH

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