Eugene wrote in his Diary:
Answers from our various houses on the question I submitted to them. We should record all of them as they are so edifying…
It will be a beautiful page in our history. The spirit of this little known Congregation and the dedication of its members will be visible. I defy the most regular Orders that enjoy the highest esteem in the Church to provide a better example.
Eugene continues, “let them read the letters of” and he lists the names of 13 Oblates:
and they will see that the spirit of God animates these souls, that they understand the duties of their holy state, that zeal for the salvation of others, devotion to the Church and love for the Congregation are the common prerogative of our dear family.
Eugene de Mazenod’s Diary, 24 July 1841, EO XX
A few days later he enthusiastically exclaimed:
They will honor our small and humble Congregation, which unfurls its standard for the first time outside the confines of its birthplace, and they will bring down God’s blessing by their holiness and the efforts of their zeal not only upon the work they undertake but on the whole Congregation in the name of which they will fight.
Eugene de Mazenod’s Diary, 6 August 1841, EO XX
That small step was to be a giant leap for the Mazenodian Family! I hope Neil Armstrong doesn’t mind my paraphrasing his words, but this acceptance led to a major paradigm shift for us and for hundreds of thousands of people enriched by the Mazenodian missionaries.