Having decided to change the name of our Congregation, Eugene now asked the Pope to give us this name officially. When this request was eventually granted, Eugene was able to proclaim everywhere that it was “the name that the Pope has given us.”

At the same time, we ask Your Holiness that, in the Brief of Approval which the Missionaries request, you give them the name of Oblates of the Most Holy and Immaculate Virgin Mary instead of Oblates of Saint Charles: this to avoid any confusion of names with other Congregations;

“As Father Fernand Jetté stated, the title of a religious family usually expresses its nature, essence and function. It really seems that the choice of the title Missionary Oblates of the Most Holy and Immaculate Virgin Mary must have been the culmination of a new and deeper insight into the mission of the Congregation on the part of Father de Mazenod. He discovered Mary as the person who was the most committed to the service of Christ, the poor and the Church and saw her as the most comprehensive model of apostolic life as required by his Congregation.”   Casimir Lubowicki, “Mary” in the Dictionary of Oblate Values, https://www.omiworld.org/lemma/mary/

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  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    There was a time when I used to wonder why I never heard about Our Lady from some of the Oblates that I knew, after all her title was a part of their name. And as I look back on my own self I realise that I have shared with those I care about the part she has and continues play in my life.

    This morning focusing on Mary, I think for a moment of her part in my life. I have not always been aware of her (but I don’t think that was because she wasn’t there) . Mary’s being there has never been dependent on my awareness.

    But once I met her, once I was introduced to her, as with all else, I was/am forever changed. I keep thinking of all that I am learning and how that is changing me, or helping me to be more aware of all that isf. I keep thinking of what I am learning about Eugene, St. Eugene, Found, Father, friend, and how he taught and shared – he evangelized – his youth and the prisoners and in so many ways his young Oblates, and all of them to come. He does it still today, through them. And I too in my own small ways share and form as I journey with others.

    I look and see how my faith continues to be grown – Mary is an integral part of that and I cannot (nor do I want to try to) separate her from that. I remember first hearing an Oblate speak about Mary being the first model of ‘oblation’ – I couldn’t quite figure that out but I managed to hold on to it even though I did not understand.

    I feel this morning as if I am standing at the edge of a great cliff – there is no danger of falling off, but rather a sense that I am in the midst of and catching a tiny and foggy glimpse of ‘what is’. Mary is an integral part of that ‘what is’. I am seldom able to put it all into any kind of words, especially this morning. So just as Eugene did so many years ago, as he sat in the chapel before his statue of Mary Immaculate, I too will sit with her through my day, as she reveals herself throughout the day and particularly in these mornings leading up to her Feast Day.

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