Letters of Marcellin – 014

Marcellin Champagnat


The Founder is no doubt answering a New Years letter from Brother Barthélemy (Badard), as he will again the following year. We do not have brothers letter, so we do not know if he also wrote about other personal matters. In any case, Fr. Champagnat takes advantage of the opportunity to encourage him by showing him what a noble vocation he has. For more information on Bro. Barthélemy, see his biographical sketch.

Dear Brother Barthélemy and your dear fellow-worker,

I was very glad to hear from you and to know that you are in good health. I also know that you have many children in your school; you will consequently have many copies of your virtues, because the children will model themselves on you, and will certainly follow your example.

What a wonderful and sublime occupation you have! You are constantly among the very people with whom Jesus Christ was so delighted to be, since he expressly forbade his disciples to prevent children from coming to him. And you, dear friend, far from preventing them, are making every effort to lead them to him. What a reception you will have in your turn, from this divine and generous master, who does not let even a glass of cold water go without its reward!

Tell your children that Jesus and Mary love them all very much: those who are good because they resemble Jesus Christ, who is infinitely good; those who are not yet good, because they will become so. Tell them that the Blessed Virgin also loves them, because she is the mother of all the children in our schools. And tell them that I love them very much too; and that I never once say Mass without thinking of you and your dear children.
How happy I would be if I could be a teacher, and devote myself even more directly to educating these impressionable children!

Things are going fairly well in all the other establishments.
Pray for me and for everyone here.

I have the honour to be your very devoted father in Jesus and Mary,

Sup. of the Bros. of Mary

Notre Dame de lHermitage, 21 January 1830

Edition: Translation from: Lettres de Marcellin J. B. Champagnat (1789-1840) Fondateur de l?Institut des Frères Maristes, présentés par Frère Paul Sester,1985.

fonte: Daprès lexpédition autographe - AFM 111.2; éditée dans CSG I, p. 153


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