Letters of Marcellin – 323

Marcellin Champagnat

1840-02-22

Just as he is preparing to fulfill the expectations of the city of St-Etienne, which is counting on brothers for its Institute for Deaf-Mutes, the Founder receives a similar request from Le Puy. It is easy to understand why he does not hesitate to answer in the affirmative, which obviously does not mean that he thinks he can very readily satisfy both requests. Even though he will ultimately satisfy neither one, he still shows very clearly that this type of apostolate fits perfectly into his conception of the vocation of the Little Brother of Mary.

22nd February 1840

Dear Father and Confrère,

We were pleased to receive your proposal to send two of our brothers to direct an establishment for deaf-mutes in your city. It fits perfectly into the plan of our institution, which is totally dedicated to the education of children of whatever condition.

For some time now we have been entreated and urged to take on establishments of this type. We hope we will soon be in a position to further the charitable plans of the persons who are interested in such an excellent work, and steps have already been taken to have two of our brothers trained for this type of teaching in the Royal Institute for Deaf-Mutes in Paris. How fortunate our brothers will be, if, having been called to teach this portion of the flock of Jesus Christ, which has so many claims on the solicitude of charitable people, they become more and more worthy of such a holy task.

We intend to go to Le Puy sometime in March to meet with you and decide on the best way to insure the success of this under-
taking. Meanwhile, we would be interested in knowing how this institution is set up, whether it is under public administration or directed by private individuals, etc.

Please accept the total devotedness with which I have the honor to be, Father and dear confrère, your most humble and most obedient servant,

Champagnat

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: D?après la minute, AFM, RCLA 1, pp. 175-176, nº 219

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