“January 25 1816 is the beginning of our congregation, characterized by the missionary spirit of Eugene and his companions to respond to the situation of the Church by preaching the Gospel to the poor and most abandoned. They responded to this missionary call by coming together in poverty and joy to live in apostolic community.”

Father Louis Lougen OMI

The all-important first day of community life for the Missionaries was obviously a story often repeated in all its details. In his Memoires, Father Tempier, described it as: “This memorable day that I will never forget for as long as I live.”

“My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord;
my spirit rejoices in God my savior
The Mighty One has done great things for me,
    and holy is God’s name.
God’s mercy is from age to age”
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  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    Happy Feast Day to all and most specially to those have gathered together in San Antonio to celebrate their belonging to and with each other in the Mazenodian Family!

    I joined you in spirit yesterday afternoon and even missing so much of the words that were being said I was able to celebrate with all as you shared and celebrated together your experiences and then your dreams of how you (and so many of us) hope to move forward with each other and all you will return home to. I was reminded of the diagram that Frank used some years ago – with the heart of Jesus in the centre – a heart on fire with arrows moving out to the apostles and disciples and then in and between them back and forth to one another. And from them outward in an ever-growing spiral – to us. I saw that being lived out as I watched and listened. And I thought of Fr. Albert Lacombe, OMI and how he said that with the Oblates his heart had found a home – and when Sandy shared that piece of his and her story my own heart responded and joined with all.

    I look at Eugene and those very first missionaries – they did not received the gift of the spirit and hold it in just for themselves. They shared it with all in more ways than there is space to list today. They shared it and so it grew and today it is shared around the world and not just with a few religious but with so many. The invitation is an open one – and it is to proclaim the greatness of the Lord. My heart sings and joins with all who come together in this holy space.

    A perfect way to celebrate this 203 anniversary. Yesterday I heard of the desire to pray and be together in prayer. Oraison was mentioned (I want to say over and over, but perhaps that is just what my heart wanted to hear) and the need and desire to pray together. Oraison. And my heart responded with great joy because that is how Eugene would ‘be’ with his sons and how he continues to be with all of us – his sons and daughters. I offer my day in thanksgiving that he brought me and gave me a family to which my heart belongs.

    My heart and my spirit joins with all the members of our Mazenodian Family and live our oblation to God, and to each other.

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