Centenaire Australie – The marist Spirit: our inheritance


It has often been said that Australia is so far removed from the Mother House that it was never clearly known what was going on «down under." In the days of Sailing Boats no-one ever thought of going to Europe; even though the Second Novitiate was introduced in 1897 few could even aspire to go there; so few spoke French. By the time steam boats made it possible there was a Superior who thought that the Brothers in Australia «had nothing to learn from Europe "! It was the days before subsidiarity and dialogue! Only after the Second World War did any regular flow of Brothers begin to appear on the European scene. Could they in these circumstances establish and maintain the true Marist Spirit?

Fortunately the pioneers were outstanding Marists – Br. Ludovic, Brother Vales, Brother John. These were men who not only knew the Marist Life, but lived it for many years in the newly found Province. Brother John, as Provincial and Assistant was associated with the Province for nearly 40 years, from 1875 to 1914. He left the British Isles, as he said: «to create a band of religious from the crude material afforded by young countries like Australia and New Zealand." Yet by 1902, of the 187 Novices and Brothers in the Province, only 10 were Europeans. Brother John attended five General Chapters and the Bulletin of the Institute said of him: «Brother John occupied a great place and played a great role in the Institute during 56 years of his religious life."

Brother Stanislaus who joined the Congregation in 1873 was to become the first Australian-born Provincial in 1903. An artist by temperament, to this he joined a deep piety characterised by devotion to the Blessed Sacrament and to Our Lady. «He had a wonderful power for stimulating the young to higher resolves," wrote Brother John, and we have reason to be grateful to Providence for giving us such a man… a model of piety, good manners and religious tone." For 36 years, from 1880 to 1916 he was prominent in the Province.

Brother Victor spans 40 years of which he spent 22 as Master of Novices. Joining in 1880 he was not to die till 1934. His library was small, apart from the works of the Institute, which he knew very well. He was a simple man whose life spoke much louder than his words. His formulas were simple. «If you want something done… do it yourself." The Church, the Founder, the Superiors… these were for him the solid guides to a life of prayer, self-denial, devotedness.

Br. Clement joined "that new French Order" in 1880. Within ten years he became Director and for the next 60 years he was to be in a position of authority – Master of Juniors, of Novices, Provincial and finally Assistant for 22 years. Towards the end of his life when a passing suggestion was made that the Superior General might be re-elected he said: «Brother, it's a mistake to keep a man too long in authority"! Solemn and strict on himself, he had a kindly streak in his nature which he exercised only for others and not for himself. He was an ardent admirer of Father Champagnat whose life he knew well and copied in his own life. "He impressed all he met; his personality commanded attention; his urbanity and dignity were just as remarkable.

For those who remain to-day there was probably no character more likeable than that of Brother Andrew. He entered the Congregation in 1901 and died during the last General Chapter in 1967. After being Director of several Houses he became Provincial in 1931. He was responsible for the Schools studies and that of the Brothers' religious studies. One tribute must suffice: «He was constantly engaged in work and overwork, but beneath it flowed a deep and strong current of prayer and union with God. The Rule was at all times strictly upheld. He was a providential source of the Marist spirit; it was indeed an extraordinary blessing bestowed on the Institute to have been given a man like Brother Andrew."

We cannot conveniently speak of those who carry on the work, but the tribute paid to one who died in 1970 shows that not all have failed to learn the lesson. Of Brother Anselm it was said: «In Brother Anselm the history of the continuity of the Order was maintained; in his spirit of work, in his courageous endeavour, he sustained the Founder's spirit and opposed the tendency to take it easy; he was to his confreres and acquaintances ' a burning and a shining light'."

MASS for the Deceased. Prayer of the Faithful.

My dear Brothers, today we remember all those members of the Order who, in the last hundred years, died in the love of God but who may not yet be free from the effects of sin. Let us now pray for the faithful departed that our hope for them may be fulfilled.

Among the community of the dead, let us remember our founders and pioneer Brothers, the makers of schools and provinces whose hands raised the fabric of our house. Let us remember Br. Ludovic and his companions, let us remember Brs. John, Stephen, Austin, Basil and many others. May they have rest and reward. May we follow in their ways. Lord hear us.

We remember our men of patriarchal age and virtues. Their lives were almost the span and epitome of our History. Their fidelity beats a path into the future. May we keep in our minds and our prayers Brothers like Henry, Eusebius, Avellino and Celian. Lord, hear us.

We remember our old superiors whose province was a continent, their journeying often, in labour and painfulness, in much watching, their daily solicitude for all the brethren: Brs, Felix, Alphonsus, Clement, Andrew, Arcadius and Brendan – may they have rest and reward. Lord, hear us.

We remember Brothers who wore their scholarship humbly, whose learning illumined our congregation: Brs. Borgia, Sebastian, George, Gerard and Frederick. May perpetual light shine upon them. Lord, hear us.

L’ESPRIT MARISTE: Notre Héritage.

Du temps des bateaux a voiles, aucun Frère australien n'avait l'idée de se rendre au centre de l'Institut. Ce n'est qu'après la Seconde Guerre Mondiale que les Frères des antipodes commencèrent à venir plus régulièrement en Europe. Comment, dans de telles circonstances, l'esprit mariste s'est-il maintenu?

Tout d'abord, les premiers Frères: FF. Ludovic, Vales, John, étaient d'authentiques maristes. Le F. John dirigea la Province pendant 39 ans, de 1876 à 1914 comme Provincial et Assistant.

D'autre part, il convient de mentionner quelques hommes remarquables qui eurent une grande influence. Le F. Stanislaus qui entra dans l'Institut en 1873 devint le premier Provincial de nationalité australienne. C'était un modèle d'esprit religieux, de dévotion a Marie, et avait le don d'enthousiasmer les jeunes.

Le F. Victor qui mourut en 1934 fut Maître des Novices pendant 22 ans. Homme simple et dévoue, il connaissait parfaitement les ouvrages de l'Institut et en vivait.

Le F. Clément qui entra dans l'Institut en 1880 fut successivement Directeur du juvénat, Maître des Novices, Provincial et Assistant. C'était un ardent admirateur et imitateur du P. Champagnat. Personnalité remarquable, il impressionnait tous ceux qui entraient en contact avec lui.

Plus près de nous, le F. Andrew, mort en 1969, devint Provincial en 1931. C'était à la fois un grand travailleur et un homme de prière. Il fut une source providentielle d'esprit Mariste.


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NUESTRA HERENCIA: El espíritu marísta

En tiempos de los barcos de vela, ningún Hermanó de Australia pensaba viajar al centro del Instituto. Fue después de la Segunda Guerra Mundial cuando los Hermanos de los antípodas empezaron a venir regularmente a Europa. ¿Cómo, en tales condiciones, se conservó entre ellos el espíritu marista?

Los primeros Hermanos – Ludovic, Vales, John, etc. – eran, ante todo, auténticos maristas. El H. John dirigió la provincia durante 30 arios como provincial o como asistente.

Por otra parte, conviene mencionar algunos hombres que ejercieron gran influencia. El H. Stanislaus, que entró en el Instituto en 1873, fue el primer provincial de nacionalidad australiana. Era modelo de religioso, de devoción a la Virgen y tenía la virtud de entusiasmar a los jóvenes.

El H. Víctor, muerto en 1934, maestro de novicios durante 22 años. Hombre sencillo y abnegado, que conocía perfectamente la espiritualidad del Instituto y la vivía.

El H. Clement profesó en 1880 y fue sucesivamente director del juniorado, maestro de novicios, provincial y asistente. Era un fervoroso admirador e imitador del Beato Fundador. De imponente personalidad, impresionaba a cuantos entraban en contacto con él.


Más recientemente, el H. Andrew, fallecido en 1969. Fue nombrado provincial en 1931. Era a la vez un hombre de acción y de oración.

En la ejemplaridad de estos y de otros Hermanos encontraron todos un manantial inagotable del espíritu marista.



No tempo dos barcos a vela, nenhum Irmao australiano sonhava em visitar os lugares onde a Congregacao teve origem.Só depois da Segunda Guerra Mundial os Irmaos das antípodas comecaram a vir mais regularmente á Europa. Como, em tais circunstancias, se manteve o espirito marista?

Primeiramente, porque os primeiros Irmaos – Ludovic, Vales, John – eram auténticos maristas. O Ir. John dirigiu a provincia durante 39 anos, de 1876 a 1914 como provincial e assistente.

Depois, convém mencionar alguns homens notáveis e de grande influencia. O Ir. Estanislau que entrou na Congregacao em 1873 e que foi o Io provincial de nacionalidade australiana. Era um modelo de espirito religioso, de devocao a Maria e tinha o dom de entusiasmar os joveris.

O Ir. Victor que morreu em 1934 foi mestre de novigos durante 22 anos. Homem simples e dedicado. Conhecia perfeitamente as obras da Congregacao e vivia-as.

O Ir. Clemente que entrou na Congregacao em 1880 foi sucessivamente diretor do luvenato, mestre de novicos, provincial e assistente, era um grande admirador e imitador do Pe. Champagnat. Personalidade notável, impressionava todos os que contatavam com ele.

Mais perto de nos, o Ir. André, morto em 1969, tornou-se provincial em 1331. Era ao mesmo tempo um grande trabalhador e um homem de oragao. Foi'oma fonte providencial de espirito marista.


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