IT IS FOR YOU TO OPEN THE RULE BOOK SO THAT EACH ONE MAY DRAW HIS INSPIRATIONS FROM IT

Father Guigues is entrusted with the responsibility of keeping everyone in the community focused on the spirit and letter of their God-given vocation, as expressed in the Rule.

The only appropriate expression of the gratitude we owe God for this miracle is a firm resolution to walk always in his presence according to our vocation, in the exact observance of our Rules. This is your responsibility, very dear Father Guigues, the man I have named superior of this new house and to whom I am confidently imparting a large share in the solicitude that is mine.

It is for you to open the Rule book so that each one may draw his inspirations from it, and knowledge of the style of conduct he must pursue.
Put aside all counsels of human prudence. There is no true wisdom outside the fulfilment of one’s duties, and duties are fixed and sanctioned by the infallible authority that has imposed them.
 Let the introduction of the least abuse be anathema to you. God would call you to account for it, for it is you who are to build the foundations of the new community, and it is vital that it diffuse abroad the aroma of Jesus Christ.

Letter to Bruno Guigues, 3 September 1834, EO VIII n 485

Why do all this? To allow the perfume of Jesus Christ to fill the world. The image that comes to mind is that of incense and how its smoke and smell permeate everything around. This is the vocation of the Mazenodian missionary: make known the beauty of the presence of the Savior in people’s lives.

This entry was posted in WRITINGS. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to IT IS FOR YOU TO OPEN THE RULE BOOK SO THAT EACH ONE MAY DRAW HIS INSPIRATIONS FROM IT

  1. Eleanor Rabnett, Oblate Associate says:

    I was recently at an event which brought a group of people together to read and discuss a document and I found myself a little disconcerted when a friend suggested that it would all be much easier to deal with if we changed one word in the title to another which was easier for my friend to deal with. I did not like what was being suggested and yet even as I silently baulked at such a suggestion I remember how I have often struggled with words that are at first difficult for me to relate to.

    I have often struggled when Eugene has written about the aroma of Jesus Christ, the odor of love. I would ask myself what he was talking about. I tried for a while to change it in my mind; gratefully I did not travel that route but rather chose instead to try to move past my questioning; doing this by finding a place within myself to carry it in the hope that I might one day understand it.

    It is all about how we look at and perceive something. Frank speaks about Fr. Guigues being entrusted with the responsibility of keeping everyone in the community focused on the spirit and letter of their God-given vocation as expressed in the Rule. The words “entrusted”, “spirit and letter” and “expressed in the Rule” all connote something that is a gift to be received and carried in love. Eugene writes:“…it is you who are to build the foundations of the new community, and it is vital that it diffuse abroad the aroma of Jesus Christ”.

    Both of these expressions remind me of the Constitutions and Rules; most specifically the first chapter on Mission – those first ten constitutions, then chapter two, section two on how we live in faith and then section three on apostolic community. Different threads that make for a beautiful tapestry in life. I begin to understand and relate; I give thanks for this gift I have received this morning.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *