EUGENE ENTRUSTS HIS FORMATION IN THE SEMINARY TO MARY
“Mary was the first person to take the ‘way’ to enter the Kingdom of God that Christ opened, a way which is accessible to the humble, to all who trust in the word of God and endeavor to put it into practice.” (Pope Benedict XVI)
After his conversion journey and discernment that God was calling him to become a priest, the 26 year-old Eugene went to the Seminary of Saint Sulpice in Paris.
On the first page of his study notes at the seminary, he wrote this dedication:
To the greater glory of God and of the Immaculate Virgin. Under the patronage of this Virgin, conceived without sin… so that for these and before them the Immaculate Mother may help me in this difficult course of studies
Traité de la pénitence, Ms. Oblate General Archives, DM-III 8a
As Mary reflected on and learnt from the presence of Jesus in her life, so too did Eugene want to have this same attitude in his seminary studies.
Mary Chapel, St Sulpice Church
After a year as seminarian in St Sulpice in Paris, Eugene reveals the place of Mary in his spirituality:
But devotion to the Blessed Virgin must excel all others; for the glorious Mother of God is called by the Church: our life and our hope. It is morally impossible for a soul to make any progress in the ways of perfection if it lacks this tender and sincere devotion to the most holy Mother of God.
General counsels for achieving perfection, notes taken in 1809, EO XIV n.39
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