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

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  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    Eugene truly did model himself and in many ways his congregation on Alphonsus Liguori (who founded the Redemptorists,). As I think upon the word contagious I think of of some of the Oblates who have shared their love and knowledge of Eugene and his way of being – they helped to set me on fire and showed me how I could learn more, model myself more on St. Eugene – yes sharing in his spirit, his charism and the legacy left to all of us. This place here which has opened doors to ways of being and learning and reflecting more than I would ever have imagine when I first came to ‘visit’. I think back to a person who was a light in my dark world, Kay Cronin who was one of, if not the first Honorary Oblates in Canada – she was in some ways my Don Bartolo.

    I find the questions posed by Frank are ‘key’ and they want to lead me into a deeper reflection(s) – not necessarily to be shared here but to be used in my private time and I am most grateful for them. They will be a part of the way I deepen my knowledge and passion about God, about Eugene, about a way of living and being. And I will share with others because that is how ‘it all works’ – by sharing what I have been given. Eternally grateful for the many sons and daughters of Eugene de Mazenod and Eugene himself who share and reflect God’s compassion and love.

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