558 - August-September 2015
July 9th, 2015 - September 9th, 2015



WYD OMI 2016 -- website and registration

Every day, Oblate World Youth Days in Wroclaw (Poland) in 2016 are coming closer! Do you want to know more about it? Are you organizing your group's arrival? Please visit the official English website http://wyd2016omi.org/en/! The website has been up since January, and now all of its contents are translated into English; the will be soon in other languages.

Registration for Oblate World Youth days began on July 13. We invite youth leaders and other organizers from all around the world to register their youth groups at https://register.wyd2016omi.org/en/.

Detailed instructions for leaders are on the main site of the Registration System and at this address: http://wyd2016omi.org/en/rejestracja/. Please read it carefully before you decide to register your group!

Rates for participation in WYD 2016 have been set. More information about them can be found here http://wyd2016omi.org/en/oblackie-sdm-2016/pakiet-pielgrzyma-sdm-omi/ and at http://wyd2016omi.org/en/oblackie-sdm-2016/stawki/.

Register your group now! The Oblates and organizers in Poland are waiting for you!



Return to Solignac

It was 1945. The Oblates were looking for a place big enough to accommodate the large numbers who were entering the Congregation. Their destiny took them to the Abbey of Solignac which they knew from preaching parish missions in the area before the war.

The scholasticate started in the fall of 1945. It would soon accommodate the young formandi of the three provinces of France (North, South and East). The adventure lasted until the early 70’s. After the vocation crisis of the 70’s, an OMI community stayed on: University Seminary, retreats. The community left Solignac in 1991.

Saturday, July 3, 2015 - On the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the arrival of the Oblates, the association "Renaissance of Solignac - Le Vigen” opened an exhibition that will remain in the abbey throughout the summer. Some Oblates "of the era” made the trip to attend and arouse some old and beautiful memories with the good people of Solignac...

Excerpts from the homily of François Carpentier:

Seventy years ago, the first Missionary Oblates arrived in Solignance and brought back to life the old abbey. Soon there were about a hundred young men, deeply rooted in the love of Christ and ready to leave for the mission, in whatever part of the world in the footsteps of the apostles of Jesus just as St. Eugene de Mazenod, their Founder, had asked of them. [ … ]


While awaiting the great departure, the send-off to the mission, together we studied within these ancient walls: philosophy, theology, the Bible. Together we prayed in this wonderful abbey church. We also went out to teach catechism or animate the Mass in neighboring parishes.

And then several of us joined the local football team: Roland CHRIST whose shots were feared and about whom the opponents would say: "They put Christ on their team! That’s it for us!” Roland is still in Cameroon. And Gaby CRUGNOLA (also still in Cameroon) and Jo FENART, "the great Fenart” as he was called. I saw him at Lyon a few days ago on his bed of suffering. He is very ill, but he told me to say that he had had some unforgettable moments of friendship with the football team of Solignac.

And there were the Brothers: those who cultivated the garden and assured our nutrition; and Bro. KEHREN who operated the turbine; Bro. HELBERT and his pig farm; Bro. LELOUP who repaired our shoes. We cannot name all of them. We formed a very lively, joyous and brotherly community.

We have not forgotten any of that… nor the village where our formation took place. And there are hundreds of missionaries who left from Solignac to carry the Good News of Jesus into the world! How will future generations remember this? [ … ]

Let’s just say that the word of the missionaries was received in a variety of ways.

In France, many were sent out as missionaries, for France had become a real "mission country”. The faith had fallen asleep in the hearts of many Christians. So many Oblates took part in the great "missions” to awaken it. Others went out in caravans, through the Creuse, from village to village in order to make the Lord present. Others went out to share the difficult conditions of life and labor of the workers. Everyone could tell of the joys and sorrows that his apostolate has brought him.

In Cameroon and in Chad where many of us were sent, we saw wonderful Christian Communities being born very rapidly in all the ethnic groups (there are 60 of them in North Cameroon!).

Perhaps the Word shocked and even pushed some of them! But it is the Word of God! Even if it is not wanted, we nevertheless must continue to proclaim it, like Ezekiel.

At this time, the young Church of North Cameroon is living a difficult moment, but it’s holding on, in spite of the cruelty of the Boko Haram which has given it its first martyrs: some catechists, a community leader, some Christians…

In Laos, considered the most difficult mission, there was a situation of war until 1975.

Several missionaries there were killed for the sake of the Gospel which they were proclaiming and because of their religious and charitable activities in service of these very poor peoples. Pope Francis just recognized as Blessed a Laotian diocesan priest, some catechists, some youth, some missionaries of the Foreign Missions of Paris (MEP) and seven Oblates whom some of the former students at Solignac knew here. Like Saint Paul, they "accepted wholeheartedly for Christ: weakness, persecutions and painful situations.” Finally, the Oblates had to leave Laos. Only the Laotian Oblates remained, one of whom is bishop of the capital, Vientiane.

God had promised that his Word does not come back to him without having borne fruit: in Vietnam, a beautiful mission has been born in the last 10 years. It already has some 60 Oblates.

Just as Jesus continued to go through the cities and villages, even after his disappointment in Nazareth, the Oblate mission continues. (http://www.oblatfrance.com/)


Missionaries in a time of war

This is a very difficult time for us in Eastern Europe. No one among us could have imagined that in the 21st century there could be a war and that people would be killing each other. The world and neighboring countries were surprised at the beginning, but now that more than a year has passed, we have the impression that the world is not very interested in the conflict in Ukraine. But here, people are dying every day, more than 600,000 victims; many families have lost their homes. The conflict isn’t finished yet, but we can imagine what the future has in store: terrible psychological suffering is awaiting our people.

The Oblates in Ukraine are also involved in this situation with the people. We hear them; we try to console them, to be with those who have lost their children and who are afraid about the future of their sons who are defending our country. We also collect things for refugees; we ask people to open their houses for those who knock. We also share food and other aid with those in need in our community houses.

Two times a week, Brother Sebastian JANKOWSKI is provides food at six places in Kiev for more than 300 homeless. Fr. Rafal STRZYZEWSKI was on the defense line in eastern Ukraine to deliver food, to be close to ours soldiers and to speak with them. He spoke with so many people whose wish is that the war would be finally finished.

Only God knows when that will happen. To help people to live during such a difficult time, the Delegation in Ukraine started a contest based on knowledge of the life of St. Eugene de Mazenod. To do this, we published a third book in Ukrainian about our Founder: "He has chosen the poor”. This book speaks about the difficult 11 years of exile of St. Eugene de Mazenod and it is quite useful for the Ukrainians because it shows how to live in such difficult time.

Many, including children, teenagers and young adults, especially from Oblate parishes, have taken part in the contest. The final contest took place in Tyvriv on May 2. The grand prize for young adults was a trip to Aix-en-Provence; for adults, a pilgrimage tour of Rome; and for teenagers, a bicycle. (Photos can be found at: http://goo.gl/LUVnjU.)

As a special way to live the ongoing Oblate Triennium leading up to the 200th anniversary of our founding, the Oblates are offering three-day retreats in 80 parishes in Ukraine. They are accompanied on the retreats by the statue of the Pilgrim Virgin of Fatima. This encounter with the Virgin Mary is the Oblates’ way of contributing to the much needed prayers for peace in Ukraine. (pictures: http://goo.gl/XvC9Z0) [Pavlo VYSHKOVSKYI, Delegation Superior]



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36th General Chapter 2016
36th General Chapter 2016
Oblate Triennium
Oblate Triennium
OMI Vocations
OMI Vocations
Links to Other Oblate Sites
Links to Other Oblate Sites