OUR FOUNDING VISION TODAY: UNCONDITIONALLY COMMITTED TO THE CHURCH

“Eugene de Mazenod was a man passionately in love with Jesus Christ and unconditionally committed to the Church.”

Eugene’s passionate love for Jesus Christ the Savior was the lens through which he perceived everything. It was from this vantage point that he understood the Church as the Body of the Savior, the People of God. It was this vision of unconditional commitment that he communicated to us:

Our love for the Church inspires us to fulfil our mission…

Constitution 6 of our Oblate Rule of Life invites us to unconditional commitment to the Church in widening spheres.

Firstly, to see our Church leaders as given to us by the Savior in order to fulfil our mission in communion with them.

Thereafter, in communion with the local church of which we form a part. The look of the Savior then leads us to work at living in unity with all who follow Jesus Christ, in their various expressions.

Finally, we are invited to recognize the values of God as expressed by those who do not know Jesus Christ. Our relationship with the Church is expressed in the full constitution reproduced here:

Our love for the Church inspires us to fulfil our mission in communion with the pastors whom the Lord has given to his people; we accept loyally, with an enlightened faith, the guidance and teachings of the successors of Peter and the Apostles.

We coordinate our missionary activity with the overall pastoral plan of the local Churches where we work, and we collaborate in a spirit of brotherhood with others who work for the Gospel.
Our efforts will be characterized by a genuine desire for unity with all who consider themselves followers of Jesus, so that, according to his prayer, all may believe that the Father has sent him (cf. Jn 17: 21). Finally, in our hope for the coming of God’s reign, we are united with all those who, without acknowledging Christ as Lord, nevertheless love what he loves.

CC&RR, Constitution 6

 FOUNDING VISION

“When God transforms the life of just one leader, that leader can transform a church. When one church is transformed, you can transform a community. And when enough churches are thriving, you can affect a region, a country, and eventually the entire world with the positive, life-changing power of Jesus Christ and the redeeming and restoring work of his people.”   Bill Hybels

 

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2 Responses to OUR FOUNDING VISION TODAY: UNCONDITIONALLY COMMITTED TO THE CHURCH

  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    I begin again, finding myself slowing down with the words; “we accept loyally, with an enlightened faith, the guidance and teachings of the successors of Peter and the Apostles.” Is this what I do? What does it mean to be loyal? Am I faithful, constant, steadfast, dutiful, unwavering? I begin to say yes but when I get to the unwavering part I start to lose a little steam. So often in the midst of my ‘loyal’ acceptance there is struggle and questioning, doubts and then this is followed by little surrender(s), laying down of my arms. Even here in the midst of my reflection I must let go and surrender before being able to move on to the next words, move on in my reflection. This happens time and again some days – it is beyond my control and even my understanding. So I begin again.

    I read anew and again I stop – this time at communion. Without the loyalty, without the surrender there can be no communion for I must first let go of myself, my ego, all that I try to wrap myself up in. Reading incredibly slowly, word by word but this time the word ‘communion’ standing out as if a quiet trumpet sounds behind it.

    It is only with putting all of this in its place, acknowledging it can I then move on and celebrate Constitution 6. There is great beauty in it and I see how I am able to live it in small ways. I see the inspiration behind the words and they invade my consciousness in a way they never have before. “Yes” I want to shout. This is huge. Why have I never read it this way before? It’s real and I am able to take this on in my life.
    I want to write the words myself, but that is not necessary for they are here but I do permit myself to pick up my small green book with O.M.I. written at the bottom in the left corner and read Constitution 6 in it’s entirety, with joy and gratitude. There is within me at this moment a sense of freedom, like a bird being let loose to fly and soar.

    Thank you.

  2. Andy Sensenig OMI says:

    As a Missionary Oblate of Mary Immaculate currently serving in the community in Sitka, Alaska as a parish priest, one thing that I find beautiful about Constitution 6 calls and challenges me to be the “aroma of God” (2nd Cor. 2:15).

    Constitution 6 helps me to just focus on the needs of the parish and community around me and respond to them collaboratively and compassionately as Jesus and St. Eugene would want me to do and trust that God will take care of the rest.

    That is the beauty of being part of the Mazenod Family, because when we see a person, a family or a community in need all of us respond to that need to the best of our abilities.

    The Mazenod Family is “family” in the best sense of the word, which is why I am forever gratitude to be a part of it.

    Blessings, gratitude and joy to all.

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