IT IS ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL THAT YOU DO FOR THEM WHAT WAS DONE FOR YOU – AND MORE BESIDES

Father Mille was young and inexperienced to be the superior and formator of the Oblate scholastics, in training to be Missionaries in Switzerland. Because of the political circumstances in France, Eugene had had no choice but to appoint a young superior. For ths reason he wrote often to him to guide him. Six new students had just arrived to join the others.

You have six new students. It is absolutely essential that you do for them what was done for you – and more besides; the way the future turns out hangs on that, otherwise you will form good priests but you will never have real students…
Let us learn from experience. It will not be hard for you to see that nobody but yourself can be responsible for this important duty. It’s all very well that Ricard helps out as your assistant but the chief responsibility must rest on you, as a result you will have to ease up in other areas as you cannot do everything.

Mille had been ordained to be a Missionary and he was finding every possible opportunity to do missionary work – and getting out of the formation house far too often.

First of all you must cut back on the outings to Fribourg and on many others too which are probably more justifiable. Stay as much as possible with your community, keep for yourself the over-all direction only of temporal affairs, relying on someone else for the small details. If you can pass on to somebody else the responsibility for the theology class, you would have all the more time to give to your own task.

Letter to Jean Baptiste Mille, 24 July 1831, EO VIII n 397

Few of us are involved with the formation of new Oblates. Each of us, however, as a member of the Mazenodian Family, has the treasure of an experience of God and of being missionares in everyday life in actions and words. May we be as generous in sharing our spiritual treasure as others were in sharing theirs with us. What we have received from St Eugene and so many people, may we imitate and do for others.

This entry was posted in WRITINGS. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to IT IS ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL THAT YOU DO FOR THEM WHAT WAS DONE FOR YOU – AND MORE BESIDES

  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    I think of the number of times I have heard an Oblate tell of how he joined the Oblates hoping to be sent to another part of the world to be a ‘true’ missionary; or hearing stories told of this or that Oblate who had been sent to distant missions and who were ‘real’ missionaries. At other times I might hear conversations or remarks, laments, that they [Oblates] did not belong in parishes because the people there were already ‘churched’ and had no need of missionaries! And I would silently thank God for all of them because it was in the parish that I met the Oblates; in the parish where I came to Mass every weekend silently waiting and hoping that God would hear my prayers and show me where I belonged on a deeply personal level. Without those Oblates, how would I have heard about “St. Eugene de Mazenod” who invited me to share in this ‘charism’ and join the Mazenodian Family?

    “Each of us, however, as a member of the Mazenodian Family, has the treasure of an experience of God and of being missionaries in everyday life in actions and words. May we be as generous in sharing our spiritual treasure as others were in sharing theirs with us.”

    I look at all of the members of the Mazenodian Family that I have met over the years and how they have inspired and invited me; how they have led and taught me; walked step-by-step with me. The more I learn, the deeper I go into my own heart, recognizing the immensity of what God has given to me and how he asks me to live and share those very gifts. And they are all the stuff of everyday life.

    It is only recently that I begin to recognize the gifts that I have been given, and how I am called to share them. There are no distinguishing marks or clothing, nothing special to advertise that I am a member of this wonderful Mazenodian Family save for the small Oblate Cross that I wear. I ‘love’ and I ‘walk with’ and I share who I am and all that God has given to me and hopefully I become like leaven for others in their journeys just as many have been for me. Like Fr. Mille for and so many others I am asked to live and share with my “Oblate heart” – all the stuff of the everyday.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *