Not exactly a profound spiritual thought, but just a glimpse into Eugene’s chatty narrative to his friend, Henri Tempier, about everyday life in the seminary in Billens.
Everyone is very well. And in fact the only thing lacking here is wine, a lack shared by everyone in these parts. They drink it occasionally with visitors. For the rest, it does not enter their heads. The daily fare is very good. Every day they have soup, two helpings, a good piece of beef, a course of cabbage and newly-salted pork, very fine and tasty and very often too some local sausage. That makes three courses, not counting the sausages. At other times they have a plate of creamed turnips and cheese for dessert. At evening they often have veal. The morning and evening soups are made from stock and bread is freely available. You see there is no cause for complaint
With this they do good work, teachers and students, each does his duty. Classes of dogmatic and moral theology, philosophy, sacred elocution, mathematics, literature, history, geography, not to mention singing and liturgy. For the moment German cannot be fitted in, there are not sufficient hours in the day or even in the week. All these different occupations are well distributed, in such a way that not a moment of the day is lost.
Letter to Henri Tempier, 22 August 1831, EO VIII n 401