While waiting to meet with the Pope, Eugene writes to the Sacred Congregation of Propaganda Fide of the possibilities of sending some missionaries to Algeria.

“Since I have been asked to express the deepest feelings of my soul and conscience, I must admit my firm conviction that perfect harmony between the means to be used is absolutely necessary and that the workers to be assigned must overflow with the Spirit of God. The best solution would be to entrust this mission to the Congregation of the Missionaries of the Immaculate Conception which has most of its houses in the southern dioceses of France, mostly “in Marseilles” and “could therefore supply men with greater ease and less expense. […]They would live together in community, subject to their superior, whom they are accustomed to obey.   Joseph Guibert: superior of Notre Dame du Laus in the diocese of Gap. […] Telmon, born at Barcelonnette, in the diocese of Digne, presently at Notre Dame du Laus. Ricard, born in Allauch in the diocese of Marseilles. Bernard, from the diocese of Aix. Eymar, from the diocese of Gap, Gignoux, from the diocese of Gap.

 Should Bishop Mai decide to choose some of these men for the Algerian Mission, […] it would suffice for him to inform His Excellency the Bishop of Marseilles, as if recommending them to his charity, without mentioning my name. I would understand this, and I would reply through the missionaries, thus remaining completely out of sight.”  (Notes for the Sacred Congregation of Propaganda Fide – 2:V in Oblate Writings)

Here is Eugene, in the midst of what can only seem like betrayal by his own country – but rather than hiding way and giving-in to depression and hurt he continues to look outward to the needs of the Church.  Not letting his circumstances get him down, he actively pursues opportunities to serve God.

Offering to send five of his “best” men to Algeria, who would go and “make things happen” he also suggests leaving his name out of the request so that the French government will not find offense of any type.  This is Eugene living out his “all for God”.  This is the magnificent love of a man whose heart continues to grow and grow.

I am inspired in a whole new way this morning. O that God might grow my heart to be like Eugene’s.


About Eleanor Rabnett

Oblate Associate
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