SPIRITUALITY AS AN ONGOING ENCOUNTER WITH JESUS CHRIST THAT LEADS TO ENCOUNTER WITH OTHERS

The foundation of all Christian spirituality is a relationship with Jesus Christ. In Eugene’s life there was no doubt about this as he passionately committed himself:

You, you alone will be the only object to which will tend all my affections and my every action. To please you, act for your glory, will be my daily task, the task of every moment of my life. I wish to live only for you, I wish to love you alone and all else in you and through you. I despise riches, I trample honors under foot; you are my all, replacing all else. My God, my love and my all: Deus meus et omnia.

Notes made during the retreat in preparation for priestly ordination,
December 1-21, E.O. XIV n.95

Eugene’s objective was to live every aspect of his existence as an expression of his ideal “to live only for God” through his vowed commitment, which he called “oblation.” He articulated this in a lifestyle of service to others as an Oblate.

Fernand Jette’, a former Oblate Superior General beautifully described this relationship:

Adherence to Jesus Christ was a distinguishing feature of Eugene’s whole life. It was an experiential encounter with a person, the person of Jesus Christ, and the living relationship established between the two expressed in an ongoing fashion. This friendship showed itself through the events and grew through the pains and joys of life.   “Jesus Christ” in the Dictionary of Oblate Values http://www.omiworld.org/en/dictionary/dictionary-of-oblate-values_vol-1_j/1050/jesus-christ/

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“Spirituality is understood to be the way of life of a people, a movement by the Spirit of God, and the grounding of one’s identity as a Christian in every circumstance of life.”   National Pastoral Plan for Hispanic Ministry – USCCB

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One Response to SPIRITUALITY AS AN ONGOING ENCOUNTER WITH JESUS CHRIST THAT LEADS TO ENCOUNTER WITH OTHERS

  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    It can be disconcerting, even a little sad at times when we realise our weaknesses, our sins or ways of softening the tone.

    This morning in reading Eugene’s song of love I found myself filled with a soft tenderness – for I love this prayer, this song which ends most perfectly: ‘My God, my love and my all.’ I could feel myself opening and even promising myself to find time later in the day with Fernand Jette’s writing on Jesus Christ. But as I read the quote from the USCCB’s writing I found myself wanting for a second to suddenly take the word ‘Christian’ and ‘generalize it, change it to ‘person’, making it much less specific – telling myself it is for all people. The best that I can say about myself at that moment was that I stopped when I realised what game my mind was playing. Have I done this before? Maybe, probably. Why? What am I afraid of I continue to ask myself.

    It is a little embarrassing, humiliating in a way to admit to what I tried to do there. I think of my Beloved, God – Jesus. More than just words for they are the everything of my reality – much more than just empty words. I think of some of the problems I have been having lately with a particular type of prayer that I am trying to enter into. The word ‘Jesus’ is more than just a word to think or say, it is an invocation, it is me calling to my lover. It cannot just sit upon my breath, it must become my breath.

    There is not shame in me or any other speaking to being ‘Christian’. My apologies Frank for this interruption to what you are saying – this seems to be how the Spirit works within me. A rather humbling way of looking at my own spirituality and realising how I can actually lessen that which is the very core of my being if I do not take care.

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