THAT I DEVOTE MYSELF ESPECIALLY TO HIS SERVICE AND TRY TO REAWAKEN THE FAITH THAT IS BECOMING EXTINCT AMONG THE POOR

“Through the eyes of the crucified Savior” – a life-changing realization of God’s love for Eugene.

Having completed his discernment process, Eugene no longer had any doubts. The Savior whose love he had experienced from the cross, was challenging him to respond with a similar love: to devote himself in a special way to His service” as a priest.

The Savior’s look had led Eugene to look at the world through His eyes  and impelled him to respond accordingly: to dedicate his life to “the salvation of souls he has redeemed by his precious blood.”

He announced his decision to his mother – a decision that he pursued single-mindedly and never once regretted or veered away from in the next 53 years of his life:

As the Lord is my witness, what he wants of me is that I renounce a world where it is almost impossible to find salvation, such is the power of apostasy there; that I devote myself especially to his service and try to reawaken the faith that is becoming extinct among the poor;
in a word, that I make myself available to carry out any orders he may wish to give me for his glory and the salvation of souls he has redeemed by his precious blood.

Letter to his mother, 29 June 1808, EO XIV n 27

Thanks to Eugene’s vision and courageous response we are able to celebrate its fruits today, and continue to apply it in all situations.

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“To succeed in your mission, you must have single-minded devotion to your goal.”   A. Kalam

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One Response to THAT I DEVOTE MYSELF ESPECIALLY TO HIS SERVICE AND TRY TO REAWAKEN THE FAITH THAT IS BECOMING EXTINCT AMONG THE POOR

  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    I look at the openness of Eugene’s heart and his whole being to what he understood that God wanted of him. That he become a priest; that he found a great congregation of like-minded men who shared his spirit and who would share it throughout the world; that he become a bishop; that he do it all, that is give his all, and share the essence of who he was.

    I stop to ask myself and reflect on where God has called me to be. My pursuit to follow single-mindedly the voice of my God and to serve Him in ways too small to be noticed began in my heart and took a long time to work their way out into world. I had not heard of St. Eugene de Mazenod until 15 years and yet every moment of my life was simply another step on a path that led me to him and to where I am now. There is this morning a small sense of satisfaction and a great sense of wonder in the journey I am on – that God should call me and then not just lead me but pick me up and carry me to where I am.

    I just now had an image of Eugene as he climbed the stairs of a building to bless and old lady who was sick and most likely dying; a picture of him as he preached in the Church of the Madeleine to some of the poorest of the poor, calling them his brothers; a picture of him in 1836 carrying on as founder and bishop without a diocese, seemingly abandoned by his country and his church, fighting his way through a darkness that was black enough to kill the soul of any person; a picture of him going down to the port in Marseille and talking and listening to the fisherwomen; of him sitting at his desk and writing letters to his sons who were oceans away from him, loving them, thinking and praying for them, being with them in spirit. A million little things that he did so well – too many to ever list on one short note. And I thank God for these images; I thank Eugene for inviting me to share his spirit; I thank the Oblates for so generously sharing their founder and a way of being in allowing me to walk with, along-side of themselves. It is in very small ways, with very small actions that I devote myself especially to His service to help others as their faith is reawakened.

    It has been Eugene and his Oblates, the members of his Mazenodian family who have taught me, urged me and reminded me to look through the eyes of our crucified saviour. It could have been others, but it has been with Eugene. There is a sense of pride as I say this for I am being led a wondrous life and way of being. Thank you God for the being led here to this particular point this morning. I want to celebrate.

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