DEATH AS OBLATION

Eugene’s surrender to God as an invitation to renew our own self-giving.

“But, on the 12th of June, the situation became dangerous again. He began to suffocate and, as the patient could die at each attack: the doctor asked that the last sacraments be administered.

Father Honorat, who had been in Aix for three weeks, notified Father Tempier, who responded to his summons…and arrived the following day, June 14th. In his capacity as admonitor, Father Tempier explained the situation to him and the need for extreme unction.

The Founder received this communication with the submission of a soul entirely abandoned to the will of God. He made a general confession, and arranged the hour and order of the ceremony, which was fixed for Saturday morning.

It was followed by the reception of the last sacraments at the hands Father Tempier, appointed Vicar General of the Society from this moment. The sentiments of the liveliest faith and sublime peace manifested by the Founder filled all those who assisted with admiration.”        REY 1 p. 470

 

“The great use of life is to spend it for something that outlasts it.”    William James

 

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One Response to DEATH AS OBLATION

  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    This morning my sense of Eugene is of his vulnerability and weakness to whatever might happen. Perhaps it is Frank’s use of the word ‘surrender’ in the first line, and then when Rey notes that Eugene is full of the ‘liveliest faith and sublime peace’ that all were able to note. The image in my mind of him is one of vulnerability, powerlessness and openness to whatever he is being called to. I have never thought of death as being an oblation, – a final offering to god of one’s life.

    I have often thought of death as a ‘letting go of life’ but right now my perspective begins to subtly change and soften. For many years I would speak of ‘letting go’ but one day as I meditated on it the image that came to mind was of simply dropping it to let God go and pick it up. The image is of having something to give to another but rather than giving it to them I would say I do not need or want this anymore and then drop it in front of them vs turning towards that person and giving, reaching out and handing over whatever it is to them. From that point on I realised that I wanted to ‘give’ whatever it was to God, I did not simply want to drop it along the way with God having to pick it up. Oblation, giving with no conditions or expectations. The liveliest of faith and sublime peace. Death as an oblation. When I experience the many small deaths that occur in my life – do I simply let go of myself or do I give myself over to God. I suspect it is both, and perhaps the bigger the death the stronger the temptation to let go rather than give over.

    Sometimes it is not about what we do, but rather how we do it. Death as an Oblation.
    I think of my time in meditation and how I so often struggle with it. How am I entering into it? What does my oblation look like?

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