As we prepare to celebrate our patronal feast, and the start of the Year of Mercy, we recall a day which was to leave a permanent impression on the history of our Mazenodian family – and so it is important to explore what happened. Achille Rey, who knew Eugene well, wrote in his biography:
August 15 1822 witnessed a feast in the Church of the mission of Aix. Fr. de Mazenod blessed, in the presence of a large gathering of his youth congregants and of other pious faithful, a statue of the Most Holy Virgin, under the title of the Immaculate Conception. It is to this same statue that he came for long and frequent prayers: it has become one of the most precious souvenirs of the origins of the family.
Rey I, p. 280
In a July 15, 1889 report from the Oblate house in Aix, Father Prosper Monnet described the internal chapel of the Mission church at Aix with the altar of the vows and the “antique Virgin which formerly smiled upon our venerated Founder and today still stands on her rich marble pedestal…” (Missions O.M.I., 27, (1889), p. 285).
Yvon Beaudoin, “Oblate Madonna” in Historical Dictionary, Volume 1 (http://www.omiworld.org/en/dictionary/historical-dictionary_vol-1_o/883/oblate-madonna/)
And I will cause hostility between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring. He will strike your head, and you will strike his heel. Genesis 3:15
A great sign appeared in the sky, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. Book of Revelation12:1
“The Virgin received Salvation so that she may give it back to the centuries.” Peter Chrysologus