Category Archives: Mazenodian family

Celebration of February 17, 2019

Photo 1JPG

On February 15 (because the date of February 17 falling on Sunday), the Oblate Community of the Mother House, all united and surrounded by Fr. Jerome Velichor, the archivist at the General House, as well as many members of the Mazenodian family, celebrated in the Church of the Mission the 193rd anniversary of the recognition of the Congregation by Pope Leo XII.

Photo 2JPG

The sharing time began with a Thanksgiving Mass presided over by Superior Krzysztof Zielenda and followed by the renewal of vows.

At the end of the celebration, everyone gathered in the Suzanne room to discuss topics related to Mazenodian life. This time was first allowed Brother Benoit to take a package of answers for the second questionnaire distributed in December: even everyone did in their own way,but all those who responded said they were aware of to be called by Christ and showed by their testimonies that they live the Charism of Saint Eugene without being aware of it.

Photo 3JPG

One by one they shared their experience in some different groups or service in the life the community of Aix: Fraternity group, the Lenten and Advent Faith-sharing, the Sextius-Mirabeau, Lectio Divina, Animators of the Chants, Readers for Mass , Accountancy, and Reception. This part ended with a song to the Virgin Mary and concluded with the the prayer before meal.

Finally, all of them found themselves, as usual, around a meal shared from what everyone had brought in the atmosphere of great and warm fraternity.

Gérard SOLDAΪNI

Category: Mazenodian family, News

What is the definition of the Mazenodian family?

Photo 1

The Mazenodian Family, according to Father Frank SANTUCCI, an expert in the Oblatology, is made up of lay people, religious or priests called, each in their own way, by Jesus Christ Savior and united in apostolic community so as to live the charism of Eugene de Mazenod to evangelize those who are the most abandoned.

Photo 2

On December 8, the Mazenodian Family of Aix-en-Provence met to celebrate Mary Immaculate, patroness of the Oblates. During the meeting that took place after the Mass and at which many members of the Family participated, a questionnaire was presented to them. It consisted three parts whose key words are: Christ, community and mission.

Photo 3

« Follow me ! » (John 1,43)
The personal call to follow Christ is initiated by Jesus himself.
Am I aware of being called by Christ?
How did this call manifest itself to me, in me?

« You are all members of the same body » (Oblate Writing I,1)
Form the community following the example of the apostles because one is not holy without the others, without receiving the others.
Am I aware that the Mazenodian family is a community of called of Christ?
How does this community help me to live my faith?

« Our mission is to make men reasonable, then Christian, and finally to help them become saints » (Rule 1818)
Am I aware that St. Eugene’s missionary project can be mine?
How am I ready to manifest it in my living environment?

The community of Christ with his Apostles is the model of the Mazenodian family. The path to sanctification and the effectiveness of the mission is rooted in it.

Krzysztof ZIELENDA, OMI

Category: Mazenodian family, News

Why do the Oblates come to Saint-Laurent du Verdon?

Photo 1

Saint-Laurent du Verdon is a small village located in the department of Alpes de Haute Provence. The people of St. Laurent have the joy of welcoming many visitors, including Oblates from all continents.

Photo 2

At least three times during the year, Oblates come to this small village of about fifty inhabitants, to celebrate Mass and visit the castle. It is a pilgrimage in the footsteps of Saint Eugene de Mazenod.

It was in September 1818 that he went to St. Laurent du Verdon, in the family castle, to write the Rule of life of the Missionaries of Provence, his new-born community, later became Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate.

Photo 3

On Saturday, September 22, 2018, the Oblates celebrated the bicentenary of this Rule. About sixty lays members of the Mazenodian Family, thirty Oblates, and in the presence of Fr. Louis LOUGEN, the Superior General of the Oblates, gave thanks to God for the gift of religious life and inaugurated a commemorative plaque for the writing of the Rule of Life. The celebration ended with a picnic in the garden of the castle. It was, then, followed with a visit to the castle organized and guided by the owners of the castle. They, the owners are almost all of them from Great Britain. They are so kind and welcoming! They are good friends of the Oblates.

Krzysztof ZIELENDA, OMI

Category: Mazenodian family, News

Feast of Saint Eugene de Mazenod

Photo 1JPG

This year, since May 21 fell on Whit Monday, it was on Friday, May 25th that the Mazenodian family was invited to celebrate Saint Eugene de Mazenod with the Community of the Oblates of Aix. At the beginning of the Eucharistic celebration, the faithful listened attentively and emotionally to the account of the last moments of the life of the Founder of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate.

Photo 2JPG

The words of Scripture and the songs heard during the Mass all evoked Saint Eugene, his charism and the mission of his spiritual sons:

“To be the humble sign among men
And to reveal the Father’s Love,
You showed the way to the Kingdom
To the little ones of this earth “(Ps 95).

Then the many participants gathered in the cloister around the entire community of Aix.
The Oblates of the Mazenod Experience from all over the world were present, as well as Oblates from the community of Marseille.

Photo 3JPG

For the first time, lay people from the parish of Fuveau and one of their priests were present for this festive evening. The Mazenodian family is growing!
Fr. BONGA recalled the message of St. Eugene on charity and the heart of everyone’s mission: to make Jesus Christ known.

Then, the members of the Mazenodian family, the young Mazenodians, and the young people of the Frat, spoke about their experience with the community and within this Mazenodian family: the welcome, the simplicity and the humility of the members of the community, the serenity of this house, the love for one another that shines through, the faith in the service of others, the meeting of different cultures … so many precious gifts drawn from the Oblate charism and highlighted by the speakers!

Photo 4JPG

The evening, enlivened by international songs, continued with a great barbecue that delighted all the members of this beautiful Mazenodian family.

Chantal BERNARD-BRET

Category: Mazenodian family, News

The Encounter of the Mazenodian Family – February, 2018

Photo 1

On Saturday, February 17, 2018, the Missionary Oblates of Aix-en-Provence invited the members of the Mazenodian Family to celebrate with them the 192nd anniversary of the approval by Pope Leo XII of the Constitutions and Rules of the Congregation.

Photo 2

After reciting Psalm 102, Bonga MAJOLA and Patrick VEY offered the participants a presentation of the essential points contained in the Oblate Rules and the different dimensions of the mission of the Oblates. From the presentation of these two Oblates, certain aspects have been the focus of attention: the Constitutions and Rules were born in prayer and all the spirituality of the Missionary Oblates is in it. This Rules that every Oblate has “in mind and heart” is at the same time:
-a point of reference on which the identity of the family members depends,
-a source of deepening of the Charism,
-a reflection of the Gospel that helps to understand the requirements,
-a concrete way to discern the will of God,
-a means of renewal of individuals and communities.
In reality: “the whole life of an Oblate”!

Photo 3

The Founder’s goal was to unite the Oblates into a society in which they would become holy missionaries and engage in the service of the poor.
Today, the poor have newmultiple faces: broken families, imigration, spiritual struggle …
The two essential dimensions of the mission of the Oblates are the urgent need to evangelize and become saints, true disciples of Jesus Christ.
It is to this same mission that the Mazenodian family is associated.
Together, we are invited to bring these intentions into prayer.

Photo 4

The participants, then gathered in the chapel of the first vows, lived an intense moment of prayer: the Oblates present renewed their vows.
The evening was concluded with a warm time of sharing and friendship in the Mazenod Room.

In this year of prayer for Oblate vocations, the Community proposes a time of silent prayer every first Thursday of the month at 8:30 pm in the Oblates’ chapel, it also proposes the recitation of the rosary at the tomb of Saint Eugene de Mazenod, at the cathedral from Major to Marseille at 15h on the 4th of each month.

The next  appointment will be on September 22, 2018 at Saint Laurent du Verdon, where Eugene de Mazenod wrote the Constitutions and Rules, 200 years ago, in September 1818.

Chantal BERNARD-BRET

Category: Mazenodian family, News

The opening of the Year of Oblate Vocations

Photo 1JPG

On Saturday, December 9th, 2017, the Oblates of Aix invited the faithful to celebrate together the feast of the Immaculate Conception and the inauguration of the Year devoted to Oblate vocations.

Photo 2JPG

At first, a time of prayer, all of us gathered in the Church of the Mission. During this moment, we are reminded of the words of Eugene de Mazenod, concerning the name of his Congregation. Indeed, on December 22, 1825, shortly before the Pope recognized the Congregation as Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, Eugene de Mazenod wrote to Fr. Tempier: “Let us renew ourselves especially in the devotion of the Most Holy Virgin, to make us worthy to be the Oblates of the Immaculate Mary … “then, on March 20, 1826, after the approval of the Congregation, he wrote again to Father Tempier:” Do not you think that it is a sign of predestination to bear the name of Oblates of Mary, that is, consecrated to God under the auspices of Mary, whose name the Congregation bears, as a family name which is common with the Most Holy and Immaculate, Mother of God? … »

Photo 3JPG

Fr. Joseph BOIS, then, transmitted the announcement of the Superior General of the Congregation that : the year started from December 8, 2017 be a “Year of the Oblate Vocations”. The theme is “Come and see” (Jn 1:39): Centered on the joy and generosity of our Oblate life. This Year of the Oblate vocations will respond to Pope Francis’ call for a year dedicated to “Youth, Faith and Discernment of Vocations”.

Fr. Asodo ISTOYO, then, presented the statistics of formation in the 5 regions where the Congregation is located: Africa-Madagascar, Latin America, Asia-Oceania, Canada-United States and Europe where currently 527 young people are preparing for the missionary life.

Bro. Patrick VEY, a seminarian who does his pastoral-training in Aix for this year, presented his formation since his first steps as an Oblate. He spoke of the different stages of his formation, his long studies, his various experiences of community life and apostolic life. Soon he will pronounce his final vows.

Photo 4JPG

As part of the Year of Oblate Vocations, Br Benoît DOSQUET made a concrete proposal: every 4th day of each month, he will go to Marseilles to pray on the tomb of the Founder. He encouraged members of the Mazenodian family to come along with him.

The prayer composed for “Oblate Vocations” was then recited by the whole assembly as the highlight and concluded with a song for Mary.

Then, the assembly was invited to share a fraternal meal in the Mazenod room.

Chantal BERNARD-BRET

Category: Mazenodian family, News

Reunion of the Mazenodian Family on Sunday, May 21

Photo 1

Members of the Mazenodian family, together with the Oblate community, gathered to commemorate their attachment to the Founder and his charism. This charism is what ignites to this day the mission the Oblates consecrate their daily lives to fulfilling.

Photo 2

This date marks the return of Saint Eugene de Mazenod to the Father – May 21, 1861 – and was chosen as his feast day in the liturgical calendar upon his canonisation by Pope John Paul II on December 3, 1995.

This day has also revealed the strength of the ties between the lay people and their association to the Oblates.

Photo 3

The 11 o’clock mass, celebrated by Father Krzysztof Zielenda in the Chapel of the Mission and animated by the young Mazenodiens was followed by friendly exchanges amongst parishioners and later a shared meal in the courtyard with members of the Mazenodian family.

Gérard SOLDAINI

Category: Mazenodian family, News

Meeting of the Mazenodian Family – February 2016

Photo 1

On Sunday, February 28, 2016, the community of the Oblates of Aix invited friends of the Mazenodian Family to go on a pilgrimage to Saint-Cannat. It is in this village near Aix where Fr. Tempier, friend and confidant of Eugene de Mazenod, was born.

Photo 2

We gathered in the Church where Fr. Tempier was baptized. A simple and moving liturgical celebration reminded each of the participants the meaning of baptism and the mission of all the baptized. The figure of Fr. Tempier was evoked and accompanied this time of prayer.

Photo 3

Back at 60 Cours Mirabeau, the members of the Mazenodian Family listened carefully to the memoirs of the event celebrated on 17 February by the Oblates: « on February 17, 1826, Pope Leo XII approved the Congregation of the Missionary Oblates as well as their Constitutions and rules. This decision, which confirmed the way of life of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate and their recognition in the Church, was received with great joy. The next day, Fr. De Mazenod wrote to Fr. Tempier and the Oblates to announce the news ».

Photo 4

Then, Fr. Krzysztof ZIELENDA read the letter of the Superior General which expresses his gratitude and compliments on the occasion of the bicentenary celebrations. Fr. Krzysztof also sincerely thanked those present for the work done, services rendered, their presence and support that allowed the success of the celebrations: « a group of friends able to live a common spirituality and to achieve things together ». He continued mentioning that « the fruits of this anniversary are already tangible, upcoming meetings, conferences and other pilgrimages that mark the jubilee year 2016 will further strengthen the bonds of the Mazenodian Family with the Aix community. Thank you all ».

The evening continued with a time of conviviality around a shared meal.

Chantal BERNARD-BRET

Category: Mazenodian family, News

Mazenodian Family – December 2015

Photo 1

As usual, the encounter of Mazenodian Family began with a prayer. Then we shared around two key points: Summer School organized by the Oblates of France and the Bicentenary of the Oblate Foundation.

Photo 2

About sixty people gathered last August at the shrine of Pontmain served by the Oblates to live the Summer School on the theme “Dare to live the Hope.” Chantal, Jacqueline and Nicole, the Mazenodian Family of Aix took part in this activity. Chantal speaks in these terms: “the words that I heard in Pontmain brought me food I expected to start from Pontmain with a nice provision of Hope”. Jacqueline and Nicole are also delighted with this experience that allowed them to know better both the Oblates and their mission.

Photo 3

The preparation of the Bicentenary of the Oblates is well underwent. While there is still much to do but the commitment of the Mazenodian Family offers hope that all projects will be made in due time. The inaugural conference on the historical context in which the Congregation was founded already generating much interest. It will be given Friday, December 18 at 18.30 in the diocesan house of Aix-en-Provence.

Krzysztof ZIELENDA, OMI

Category: Mazenodian family, News

Mazenodian Family Meeting

Photo 1

Wednesday, May 27, a few days after the Feast of St. Eugene, the Mazenodian Family came together to respond to the invitation given them by the Oblate International Community in Aix. During the prayer time which introduced the meeting, the participants listened to a reading from the letter of St. Paul to the Philippians (2, 1-12), as well as to extracts from the Oblate Constitutions and Rules on the value of poverty and personal responsibility for the Oblates to reform themselves throughout their missionary life.

Photo 2

Fr. Krzysztof ZIELENDA then recalled the essential points which were developed by Fr. Gilberto PIÑÓN during his speech of February 15, 2015. The Identity of “lay associates” was then clarified as “a response to the call from Christ that lay associates live their baptism enlightened by the Charism of St. Eugene de Mazenod. In a family spirit they share among themselves and with the Oblates the same spirituality and the same missionary vision.”

Photo 3

However, to organise such a group and to give it an autonomous structure, it is important to take into consideration our proper culture, as well as the wishes of those interested. The Oblate community of Aix made two proposals to the participants. Firstly, to continue to consolidate around the Oblate community those who, directly or indirectly, are linked with it, i.e. the Mazenodian Family. Secondly, to gather into a new group of “lay associates” those wishing to know more about the charism of St. Eugene and to live it. This new group of lay associates would be autonomous from the Oblate community, nevertheless it would remain linked to the Mazenodian Family.

Photo 4

After reflection in groups, we arrived at the conclusion that we were not yet ready to become a group of “lay associates” autonomous from the Oblate community. We will continue to live as the Mazenodian Family, attentive to the call for the creation of a group of “lay associates”.

Chantal BERNARD-BRET

Category: Mazenodian family, News