In the face of the laws of 1828 which undermined the role of the Church in Christian education, barred religious from teaching, impeded minor seminaries, and expelled the Jesuits, Eugene was moved to action.
The decree which, by expelling the Jesuits, deprives all Christian families of the kingdom of the sole means that remains to them to have their children raised in the principles of our holy religion and to preserve their morals from the frightful contagion that the University colleges propagate, is a public crime which has as many accomplices as it has people to approve it.
To make matters worse, it was a Catholic Bishop in the government who had published these laws:
The scandal of seeing a Bishop countersign this decree and provoke it by a revolting report, is also a misdeed which it will not be easy either to expiate.
How can I express the sorrow that I feel at the sight of such great disorders? You understand, you who share so well my sentiments. It is not enough to groan, one must make resound in the entire world the voice of the strongest protests…
Letter to Henri Tempier, 24 June 1828, EO VII n 304
In Marseilles, Eugene responded with and through his uncle, Bishop Fortuné. In Aix, however, where the Oblates were influential Eugene responded as Superior General by many public acts of support for the Jesuits.