IF ALL THE OBLATES WERE WHAT WE OUGHT TO BE

While Eugene wrote in superlatives about the ideals of the Oblates and what the Church approbation meant for us, he also had to face the reality that the Oblate Congregation was made up of imperfect human members and not angels! “If all the members of the Society were what they ought to be” – it would have been heaven on earth.

For the rest of his life as Superior General, Eugene struggled to form us into becoming “what we ought to be” – and his ideals, example and writings continue to be a guideline for us today.

If all the members of the Society were what they ought to be, would we be in such a predicament in regard to composing the personnel of our houses? Is it not a pity that we have to defer to caprices or aversions? Has such a scandal ever been seen? Why can Fr. Touche not live under the obedience of Fr. Honorat? Whence this repugnance which troubles the order of a new-born Society in which there should be only one heart and one soul? The fact is we are steeped in pride while still wishing to appear humble ….
You have given me an agreeable surprise by letting me know that the mission of Aubagne has already begun. As soon as Fr. Mye gets over his annoyance at Fr. Suzanne being in charge, I think it is better that way, but they need more confessors than you have given them.

Letter to Henri Tempier, 9 March 1826, EO VII n. 229

 Henri Tempier had understood the “what we ought to be” from the moment that he responded to Eugene’s invitation to become an Oblate. May our journey as Oblates and as members of the wider Mazenodian Family, united around the charism of Eugene, be one of mutual help to become “what we ought to be”

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One Response to IF ALL THE OBLATES WERE WHAT WE OUGHT TO BE

  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    I was unable to reflect or write earlier this morning – there were twinges of a thought here and there but I found myself being a bit like a hummingbird – unable to stop moving the tiny beating wings of my thoughts enough to just sit somewhere and be. But coming back now a little later I seem to be able to settle. I think of my reflection of yesterday and the idea of congregation as mother, as our mother and how we all love and support, honor and serve each other. Dare I say it – as mothers to each other. And now today being called even further; “…Eugene struggled to form us into becoming “what we ought to be” – and his ideals, example and writings continue to be a guideline for us today.” Becoming who we ought to be, becoming who God has created each of to be. And how do we – well how do I become who I ought to be?

    No matter what I am told by some I find myself stating – “walking with the Oblates of Mary Immaculate, in this most deliberate way of life, sharing in the charism of St. Eugene, as an Oblate Associate. And while knowing that is not entirely accepted, it is where I believe I am called to be in my ‘becoming’. Frank’s prayer of; “May our journey as Oblates and as members of the wider Mazenodian Family, united around the charism of Eugene, be one of mutual help to become “what we ought to be” gives life to the image of us becoming points of light on our journeys and in coming together we become light to each other, allowing the other and ourselves to grow brighter and then again those around us, an ever widening circle.

    I love the idea of ‘becoming’ – not there yet, but becoming – the image is loaded with love and trust and hope, support and service. At this moment I can stop beating my wings, if only for a moment and give thanks that I do not have to go it alone.

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