Apart from the non-stop activity, Eugene carried the responsibility of nurturing the infancy of the group of Missionaries. The identity of the group was being formed. The methodology and goals of their missionary activities were being worked out as they responded to new situations. The arrival of the first novices forced the group to clarify their values and spirit so as to be able to transmit this to new members. The Youth Congregation was growing and needed more attention. The criticisms of some of the parish priests of Aix also added to his burdens. His health began to suffer:
If I told you everything I have to do as a matter of course, it would shock you. And what is killing me is the thought that having to do in the course of the day twenty things over and above what I am able for.
This is causing an involuntary interior agitation in all that I do, that heats up my blood. I think it is one of the chief causes of the ups and downs of my health. Can you imagine that I find myself myself reduced to the point of having to take salep. But I am talking too much of my wretched self…
Letter to Forbin Janson, July-August 1816, O.W. XV n 138