POPE LEO XII
FOR FUTURE REMEMBRANCE OF THE MATTER
The astonishing success however, with which Divine Providence was pleased to crown their efforts could not long remain hidden, and when the news of it began to spread, many of the neighbouring Bishops sought to secure these missionaries for their own dioceses, hoping thereby to give the fullest assistance to their own flocks. And so, the missionaries, favoured as they were by divine blessings, redoubled their efforts to follow in the footsteps of the saints, to toil earnestly in the pursuit of their own perfection, while at the same time labouring with all their heart for the salvation of souls. And when the time finally came for them to go to different dioceses to announce the call to repentance, they decided to draw up laws and rules to serve as a bond of union and as a bulwark of protection for the infant Society. And they chose for themselves the title of Missionary Oblates of St. Charles, although up till then they had been commonly known as the Missionaries of Provence.
…Given at Rome, at St. Peter’s, under the Fisherman’s Ring, on the twenty first day of March, 1826, in the third year of Our Pontificate.
Pope Leo XII
Apostolic Letter of Approbation, 21 March 1826, Missions O.M.I., n° 280 (1952), pp. 118, 138.
The Church was recognizing and approving the missionary methods of the Oblates, which Eugene had envisioned from the beginning:
They are convinced that if priests could be formed, afire with zeal for men’s salvation, priests not given to their own interests, solidly grounded in virtue – in a word, apostolic men deeply conscious of the need to reform themselves, who would labor with all the resources at their command to convert others – then there would be ample reason to believe that in a short while people who had gone astray might be brought back to their long-unrecognized responsibilities. “Take great care about what you do and what you teach,” was Paul’s charge to Timothy, “Always do this, and thus you will save both yourself and those who listen to you” (1 Tim 4: 16).
Preface of the CC&RR
“There isn’t any formula or method. You learn to love by loving – by paying attention and doing what one thereby discovers has to be done.” Aldous Huxley