Eugene’s admiration for Alphonsus Liguori was contagious. His moral theology which stressed the compassion and mercy of God became the guiding principle of the Oblate approach to people – especially in the confessional. (cf http://www.eugenedemazenod.net/?p=1651 and http://www.eugenedemazenod.net/?p=654 )
Eugene had adopted him as a patron for the Oblates and encouraged public devotion to this saint. As the building of the new church at the Calvaire in Marseille was nearing completion, he arranged for a statue of Alphonsus to be placed there.
I am going to order a full-length statue of the Blessed Alphonsus for our Church of the Calvary. Soon they will be lighting more candles at the altar of this Blessed person than at the Holy Virgin’s. It is true that several persons have benefited from the effects of the protection of this great Servant of God ….
Letter to Hippolyte Courtès, 13 January 1828, EO VII n. 290
Eugene had got his father to translate an existing biography into French (cf http://www.eugenedemazenod.net/?p=273) and later had commissioned Oblate Fr. Jeancard to write the first biography of Alphonsus in French.
I will not delay to send you a biography of our Blessed patron. They are finishing the printing this week, I hope that you will receive a copy before Lent. You know that this work is by our Father Jeancard. It is perfectly written and extremely interesting; you will need time to read it for there are over 600 pages.
Letter to Jean Joseph Touche, 30 January 1828, EO VII n 293
Who do I look to as a model and guide for my Christian life? How does that person reflect God’s compassion and love? How do I deepen my knowledge of that person’s faith and actions?
“You try to be a model of kindness and love and forgiveness to all those around you, because you have received kindness and love and forgiveness from God through Christ. That’s what Christianity is.” Patricia Heaton