Still reflecting on the providential hand of God in the matter of having sent English-speaking men to join the Oblates in France , Eugene recounted in his diary.
That is not all, now by the most singular encounter, Bro. Daly, who ordinarily has little contact with anyone, met an English Protestant who isabout to take a trip to England with his family. After a few days this Englishman decided to take Bro. Daly in his coach and to pay his travel toLiverpool. I’m still stunned by this act of Providence. I did not want to believe it and I did not really believe it until the day of departure.
So, letting myself be led by the confidence of dear Daly who had concluded this business in a single conversation, I hastened to ordain him (May 2, 1841) so that he could leave the next day in the care of God who had shown his power and goodness so clearly in favor of the holy abandonmentand trust of his young and faithful servant.
Note that for this extraordinary journey to happen as Fr. Daly desired, it was necessary that the mother-in-law of the Englishman suddenly had the fancy not to go. The Lord had likely inspired her so that there would be a place in the coach for the good Father Daly.
Eugene then explains why this move was so important. Firstly, it opened the door to evangelization of those who had left the Catholic Church. Secondly, it could provide vocations to the Oblates of future missionaries to English-speaking countries around the world.
This trip is undertaken to examine on the spot how we could form a settlement of missionaries from our Congregation who could work for the conversion of the English heretics, and if necessary and the number of associates sufficed, to even spread to the colonies or the new conquests in America or any other part of the world.
Eugene de Mazenod’s Diary, 15 and 16 July 1841, EO XX
“We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28