Father Mille, in charge of the formation of future Oblates in Switzerland, had written to Eugene complaining about one of his novices, Jean-Antoine Bernard. Eugene responded:
I am annoyed that Bernard is not more sensible of the value of the life and exercises of the novitiate. Lest he be deceived, it is there that is being laid the foundation of all the good he is being called to do.
Letter to Jean Baptiste Mille and to the Fathers and Brothers at Billens, 3 November 1831, EO VIII n 406
A shaky beginning to the Oblate life of one who was to become a zealous missionary who brought countelss people to encounter the loving mercy of God and the maternal blessings of Mary in Marseilles. The Shrine of Notre Dame de la Garde (Our Lady who Protects), which dominates the skyline of Marseilles and the harbor, became the source of fruitful mission thanks to him. Yvon Beaudoin writes about him:
Father Bernard contributed a great deal to making of Notre-Dame de la Garde a pilgrimage site worthy of Marseilles, first of all by spiritual renewal. Bishop Jeancard wrote: “He was known throughout the city and throughout the diocese. Along with his confreres, he had evangelized all the suburban parishes and, everywhere he preached, by building up the people’s trust, he had contributed in a powerful way to instilling in them that religious spirit that for a long time characterized them in a remarkable way. As a result, he was strategically placed in the shrine where it seemed his strength redoubled in the measure that he dedicated himself more keenly to all the shrine concerns. Indeed, one would be at a loss to find words to describe with what untiring zeal he dedicated himself ever more to encouraging the growth of devotion to Notre-Dame de la Garde. Whether he exercised his ministry in the chapel where he preached from time to time or whether he came to the city several days a week to hear confessions, his thoughts always turned toward the holy hill. To save souls by devotion to the Good Mother was an instinct that never left him…” (https://www.omiworld.org/lemma/bernard-jean-antoine/ for more details)