I SAW YOU IN HIM, AND THUS, ALTHOUGH ALREADY FAR AWAY, WE WERE VERY CLOSE TO ONE ANOTHER

Eugene had spent the summer months in Switzerland with the students preparing themselves to be Missionaries. He was always sad when he had to leave this community and return to Marseilles and the burdens of being Vicar General in difficult times for the Church.

My dear children. I am never going to become such a stoic as not to feel it when taking my leave of a community like yours. It is just as well I don’t experience the need to acquire that pagan brand of virtue, sign as it is of a total lack of charity and complete heartlessness…

Uniting himself with them in the practice of oraison, he expressed his fatherly love for them:

How much I love you! I feel it when I am with you. I feel it when I am far from you, you are always present to my thoughts and you live in my heart.
Yesterday and today I was with you in the spirit at your prayer times. This morning I was at Our Lord’s feet in the church at Geneva at the self-same moment as you were surrounding the divine Master in the course of midday prayer and examen. I saw you in Him, and thus, although already far away, we were very close to one another.

Letter to Father Mille and the novices and scholastics of Billens, 17 September 1831, EO VIII n 403

Through oraison he was able to be in communion with the Oblates through the uniting presence of Jesus the Savior.

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One Response to I SAW YOU IN HIM, AND THUS, ALTHOUGH ALREADY FAR AWAY, WE WERE VERY CLOSE TO ONE ANOTHER

  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    There is are tiny doubts and fears as I read about Eugene and oraison. I don’t seem to hear a lot about oraison – perhaps because it is so private or personal – and yet by its very nature it is also communal. Do I practice it? Upon reflection I find that I do. It is not usually before the blessed Sacrament but always it is before and in God; as I walk, as I sit quietly. Am I doing it right? Perhaps not – that is the fear that tries to tempt me into giving up and turning away. I think it’s a heart thing, a way of ‘being’ and loving, always in and through Him, my beloved, Jesus the Saviour.

    My mind knows that it is not something that is just reserved for religious or for the clergy – still tiny doubts and questions – like the noise inside of me as I sit to enter into contemplation. That way of ‘just being’ – sometimes so difficult to attain.

    I think for a moment of the many that I love. They are scattered around the world and yet somehow my heart reaches out towards theirs – in my prayers, in my time of simply being with God, quiet moments of deep peace and joy. It’s not a doing thing at. We meet – all of us in our prayers, in our hearts. That communion that comes as we come together in the presence of Jesus – its something that I just have to trust. Perhaps that is where the joy comes from, where the tears begin in my heart – this being that is love.

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