ON THE HONEYMOON OF THEIR MISSIONARY BEGINNINGS

The mission in Fuveau took place from the 1st to the 29th September, 1816 and was conducted by Eugene and Fathers Tempier, Mie and Deblieu.

In their book, Al Hubenig and René Motte write of this mission:

That the missionaries put themselves completely at the disposal of the populace was an important aspect of the mission and warrants notice. Two missions ran concurrently – one for the people of Fuveau and the surrounding district, during the day, and another at night for the miners of Gardanne, who daily walked the sixteen kilometres to and from Fuveau to attend the mission after their long hours of work in the mines.
Late at night, after an exhausting day of ministering, the missionaries would sit down to their frugal evening meal, with a watch placed on the table so none would eat beyond midnight. (Remember, those were still the days of Eucharistic fast from midnight on.) They then went off to bed, but rose again at 3:30 a.m. for their religious exercises and to get the mission ceremonies of the day underway. That was the “holy foolishness” of which Father Rambert spoke in the reference cited. The missionaries were in the honeymoon of their beginnings, when no sacrifice was too great and when everything, no matter how difficult, was a joy.

Living in the Spirit’s Fire, p. 79

 

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