Once the missionaries had completed the presentation of their vision statement to the diocesan authorities and elected a superior, they began a ten-day period of prayer and recollection in preparation for their first parish mission, which was to begin in Grans on 11 February. In this way a pattern of setting time aside for intense prayer before each mission was established:

On the evening preceding the day before their departure, the missionaries having the joy of being designated will go on retreat after evening prayers. It is the norm that each mission that is done be preceded by at least one day of retreat.

1818 RULE Chapter Two  §2

The days of prayer were indispensable if the missionaries were to remain true to their ideal that all their ministry was to be an invitation to others to participate in the same relationship with God that the missionaries themselves enjoyed.

Today our original founding vision continues to be expressed in our Rule of Life:

We are men “set apart for the Gospel” (Rom 1: 1), men ready to leave everything to be disciples of Jesus. The desire to co-operate with him draws us to know him more deeply, to identify with him, to let him live in us.

We strive to reproduce in ourselves the pattern of his life. Thus, we give ourselves to the Father in obedience even unto death and dedicate ourselves to God’s people in unselfish love. Our apostolic zeal is sustained by the unreserved gift we make of ourselves in our oblation, an offering constantly renewed by the challenges of our mission.

CC&RR Constitution 2

Today our original founding vision continues to become more inclusive and far-reaching:

The charism of Saint Eugene de Mazenod is a gift of the Spirit to the Church, and it radiates throughout the world. Lay people recognize that they are called to share in the charism according to their state of life, and to live it in ways that vary according to milieu and cultures. They share in the charism in a spirit of communion and reciprocity amongst themselves and with the Oblates.  In order to live more intensely the mission of evangelization according to the Oblate charism, some lay people gather in associations.

CC&RR, Rule  R37a


“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.”   John Quincy Adams

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  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    Inspiring others to dream more and become more. Wow. I look at the many who have inspired me to dream more, to become more. Some are of great ilk – Jesus and St. Paul, St. Eugene, St Theresa – too many to list and count. Today they are very much alive within me. Yes , alive in my heart – Jesus, Sts. Paul and Eugene (interesting how I have grouped those three – it says much). There is a myriad of people in my life who stand out – oddly a great number of them are Oblates; Kay Cronin, long dead now but so alive in my heart. Frank Santucci – Sandy Prather – Vlastimil Kadlec – Melania Magdovas and more names than there is space to write them. But I can’t not mention Paul Feeley who stands in the forefront of my heart as I begin to say goodbye to him and let him go. God is so very good to me.

    It is in the small the things, the everyday things that they inspire me; to keep sharing, to keep loving, to keep including all within my heart, to give all that I have, to serve – loving service nothing owed. And when my heart can’t quite reach that far then to do it from memory, from habit.

    Yes I am inspired daily to dream and become. Today I look at that founding vision and think how it began with Jesus and his disciples, with and within the Church, with Eugene and his great family that is open to all, ever growing in ways that I am sure even Eugene himself would have been unable to visage. And as I leave this space of peace and reflection I can’t help but ask myself how do I inspire others? Do I inspire them to dream and to keep becoming – outward looking far past what can be seen or imagined – going deeper into what is hidden and yet the core of our beings. Hopefully it will be in the little things and ways of being, loving. Rule 37a – my heart connects with it – I rejoice in it for it speaks so very clearly to me.

    To be able to love so imperfectly, so deeply and so whole-heartedly – the founding vision alive and continuing.

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