Responding to the good news of the papal approbation, Eugene reflected with all the Oblates in France on the significance of this event.
The conclusion to be drawn from this, my dear friends and good brothers, is: we must work, with renewed ardor and still more total devotedness, to bring to God all the glory that stems from our efforts and, to the needy souls of our neighbors, salvation in all possible ways; we must attach ourselves heart and soul to our Rules and practice more exactly what they prescribe to us.
Having our Constitutions and Rules approved by the Church gave them a totally new understanding and importance for the Oblates.
To do this well, would mean remaking our novitiate so as to meditate at leisure on all they contain.
They are not a bagatelle [ed. a trivial unimportant thing],
they are no longer simple regulations, merely pious directions;
they are Rules approved by the Church after most minute examination.
They have been judged holy and eminently suited to lead those who have embraced them to their goal.
They have become the property of the Church that has adopted them.
The Pope, by approving them, has become their guarantor.
Letter to Henri Tempier and all the Oblates, 18 February 1826, EO VII n 226
From this moment the Oblate Rule belongs to the Church and not to us. Until today we do not have the power to change the Rule. Any changes we wish to make have to be approved and come through the Vatican – because our charism is recognized as coming from God and the Pope is our guarantor. Today, because of this, we are urged:
“Each Oblate through his oblation assumes responsibility for the common heritage of the Congregation, expressed in the Constitutions and Rules and our family tradition. He is exhorted to let himself be guided by these norms in creative fidelity to the legacy bequeathed by St. Eugene de Mazenod.” CC&RR, Constitution 168