Eugene continues with what I want to call a new freedom. He has ‘let go and let God’ (as we say in AA) and this has left him open to new ways to serve his beloved – Church, bishops, clergy and all of God’s people, seeing in them some of the many faces of poverty. He writes to Henri Tempier:
“This has given birth to a desire to become in some fashion a missionary amongst my fellow bishops. […] The truth is, I feel a lot of compassion for these people who are left without a service they have a right to and which is so necessary for their sanctification. […] Goodbye, I give you an affectionate embrace.” (May 22, 1834 – 481: VIII in Oblate Writings)
Here Eugene is able to define who the poor are to him: “…people who are left without a service they have right to and which is necessary for their sanctification.”
It is as if his heart has grown tremendously since going through this ordeal between the French government and the Church. The poor now include the bishops and clergy, and all who for whatever reason do not have access to what they need. A whole new vista is opening before him.
What does this look like in my life? How am I changed and grown when going through strife and struggle? Do I close myself off or do I emerge looking for new and more far-reaching ways to beat my wings? This all seems to be a part of the process of renewal – this letting go and dying to self, a part of what we call the Paschal Mystery. Most appropriate for this time of year.
God give me the courage to risk letting go and then being open to what is new and that You are calling me to. I wish to serve only You.