Eugene continues to look forward and outward, rather than to dwell on the reason he has been summoned to Rome.  He mentions in a letter to Fr. Henri Tempier the possibilities of a seminary in Rome that would serve the sub-urbicarian dioceses.  He begins with his letter of September  12th and finishes with a second letter the following day after meeting with and speaking of the project to Cardinal Odescalchi.

“You understand from your own position whom I would propose to be the director of this major seminary, but I am not building up my hopes of being heard; at least I will have the merit of having made the proposal, I don’t say of having conceived it, as the thought came to me from God during holy Mass.”

 “I am going to put my ideas down on paper and I will try to find the force of expression that God occasionally imparts to me.”  (462:VIII in Oblate Writings)

Eugene was not content to just be a priest and to serve a stumbling Church – he wanted and was determined that God should have “good” priests at the helm of the ships – to that end he wanted always to ensure that they had the best of formation. Eugene does not credit himself with such grand ideas but rather speaks of such thoughts as coming not from himself but from God.

It is only recently that I dare to say such words myself.  But there is in them a deep truth – for myself – never would I be able to speak of such or come up with certain ideas on my own.  There is almost a fear of speaking out loud to others that God might give me ideas, desires, dreams.  It feels a little risky – like I will be mocked or put down, perhaps thought to be a ‘little’ unstable.  Fears – but sill I will take the risk here.

This is what my daily blog is all about – why after reflecting in private on these readings I share some of what I experience in prayer.  It is in part how I “try to find the force of expression that God occasionally imparts to me”.  Eugene inspires me, invites me really – to speak my truth ad share who I am with others.  Finding the words to describe how God seems constantly to be upending the universe in front of me – I do not have the capacity for that and yet I must try.


About Eleanor Rabnett

Oblate Associate
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