WHERE WOULD WE BE IF WE ALLOWED OURSELVES TO BE DISHEARTENED BY THE DIFFICULTIES THAT OUR MINISTRY BRINGS US?
“If you worried about falling off the bike, you’d never get on.” (Lance Armstrong)
As Superior General, Eugene’s responsibility was to accompany his missionaries in their ‘being” and their “doing.” He cared deeply for his missionary sons and for their well-being, encouraging them, and also correcting when necessary. He understood the debilitating effect of anxiety and worry in the missionaries.
Where would we be, my dear Father Bellon, if we allowed ourselves to be disheartened by the difficulties that our ministry brings us? This weakness is only too natural and certainly does not come from God; if we probe deeper into this feeling, we may perhaps discover something even more imperfect. And so I do not approve your worrying about it as you do. Why are you surprised to find the miseries of humanity in people? You must conquer evil with good, pray very much, always distrust yourself, but hope in God, who, precisely on this occasion, has shown you a great proof of his protection. But far from being discouraged, you ought to be full of gratitude to God, that he has enlightened us in time and put us on the track of a devilish scheme which I could luckily prevent. …
We have no idea what this “devilish scheme” was, but it threatened the well-being of Father Bellon, hence the strong words to encourage him to put things into a wider perspective.
We repair the evil, thank God for having discovered it, and continue to work with fresh zeal for the sanctification of souls, precisely because they are being attacked more violently by the enemy of every good. If we acted otherwise, we would be, I say, not only foolish but quite culpable as well.
Letter to Father Charles Bellon at N.D. de Lumières, 21 September 1845, EO X n 881
“Give all your cares to the Lord and He will give you strength. He will never let those who are right with Him be shaken”. (Psalm 55:22)
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