These beautiful words sum up all that Eugene would be for the next 24 years as Bishop of Marseilles:
Here I am in fact pastor and chief pastor of a diocese which, whatever one says of it, is not inhabited by saints.
It was given me, I would not have chosen it. However, I must attach myself to this people as a father to his children.
My existence, my life, all my being must be consecrated to it, I must have no thought but for its good, no fears other than I have not done enough for its welfare and sanctification, no other concern than that which must include all its spiritual interests and even in a certain way its temporal welfare.
I must in a word consume myself for it, be ready to sacrifice my leisure, my desire, rest, life itself for it.
Retreat preparatory to taking possession of the episcopal see of Marseilles, May 1837, EO XV n 185
This is a magnificent expression of the full meaning of oblation. Begun at the foot of the cross one Good Friday, and lived and deepened for thirty years throughout an eventful and rich missionary life.