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God has a plan for us all

 

On a Mission - Winter 2012

 

God has a plan for us all -

but sometimes it takes a while for us to find it. 
Brother Jason Rossignol, O.M.I., knows this all too well.
 

Jason knew of the Oblates and their ministries years before actually meeting them in person. His grandmother regularly sent him and his family Oblate greeting cards that represented donations to the Oblates. So when he moved from Maine to Texas during high school, he immediately connected the cards he had received from his grandmother with the Oblate priests serving in his family’s new parish.

Jason had hoped to attend the Air Force Academy, but was turned away for medical reasons. So he asked his parish priest for advice on a different calling: the priesthood. He soon found himself attending the Oblates’ pre-novitiate in Buffalo, New York. He enjoyed this first experience of watching the Oblates in action, but when he graduated in May 2001 he didn’t feel ready to commit to the Novitiate program. He felt he needed more life experience before making a commitment to the Oblates.

When Jason returned to Texas he made drastic life changes. “I got married to someone I knew from high school,” Jason said. “It was impulsive and it didn’t take long to figure out that it was not the right path.” After seeking counseling, he divorced a year later, and eventually received a declaration of nullity from the Church. He found himself ashamed that he had come from a broken family – and was now dealing with his own broken marriage.

After much soul searching, Jason reached out again to the Oblates. He felt called to do something more. But the Oblates wanted him to gain more life experience, to give him more time to discern his true calling. He went back to school, focusing on pastoral studies at Marylhurst University in Oregon. After graduating with a Masters in Pastoral Theology, he went back to the Oblates once more. He was sent to Lowell, Massachusetts to work with youth at the Oblates’ St. Patrick’s Parish. From there he traveled to the west coast, working with the Oblate Youth Encounter program in San Fernando, California.

People of Oaxaca, MexicoAs he entered the Oblate Novitiate in godfrey, Illinois in 2009 Jason was still considering whether God was calling him to the priesthood. He eventually came to realize that his vocation might be as an Oblate brother. “I started to understand that my vocation was to the Oblates, but I wasn’t sure if I was being called to be a priest or a brother. I did a lot of growing that year,” he recalled.

Jason still carried feelings of guilt over his past decisions. “I was always very guarded with who I shared my divorce with – I still had a lot of shame about it,” he admitted. But his feelings began to change when he finally told his fellow students about that part of his past. “They reminded me that St. Eugene (the Oblate founder) came from brokenness. I was surprised by that reaction,” he said. “It gave me some more peace.”

After his first year of study at the Oblate School of Theology in San Antonio, Texas Jason was assigned to Oaxaca, Mexico. It was in Mexico that he came to find peace with his divorce. “I learned so much more from the people of that mission than I could share with them,” Jason explained. “A lot of men were absent because they had left to find work in the United States and never came back. It made me realize that brokenness is becoming more and more the norm.” He realized that instead of hiding his past, he could use it as an enrichment tool: “I started sharing my story with the people in Oaxaca. They, too, carried a lot of hurt with them. But God is present. It says something for the Church to not hide St. Eugene’s broken past, but to find the profound ways God can work through that brokenness. It was definitely healing for me to share.” Jason left Oaxaca with a new fire and a new perspective.

Brother Jason will graduate in May with a Master of Divinity degree. He will then begin an internship. Based on his lifelong passion for conserving natural resources, he hopes to one day focus his work with the Oblates’ Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation (JPIC) program. He has made the decision to be an Oblate brother. “Jesus’ priesthood was the one shared by all baptized Christians; to mediate God’s presence in all our actions,” he explained. “I like the idea of doing hands-on work as a brother.”
 

Share Your Blessings …

Our friends who remember the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate through a bequest or gift annuity become members of the Oblate Good Samaritan Society. When you create a gift annuity or create a gift through your Will or Trust, you reaffirm your commitment to care for others who are less fortunate. As a member of the Good Samaritan Society, you will be remembered in the daily prayers of Oblates around the world. Please consider joining the Good Samaritan Society through a planned gift. For information, please contact the Major Gift Advisor listed in this newsletter.

Please join us in prayer for these benefactors of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate
who have been called to their eternal rest with the Lord.
Adele Baura
Frank Bellomo
Lucille Berg
Nan Merriman Brand
Laurina Breit
Alice Briscoe
Loretta Brudney
Matilda Bubela
Marion Jennings Carter
Gladys Carr
John Chmiel
Nancy DeLaurentis
Albert Eckersley
Robert Enkelmann
Walter Ernst
Mary Farnen
Margaret Ferry
Dolores Fingl
Orville Frerich
Juana Garza
Marion Grover
Dorothy Harchalk
Margaret Haselbauer
Benjamin Hausmann
Mildred Hubbard
Lloyd Klukas
Helen Kuhn
Frank Kosidowski
Elsie Lahn
Rose Laketa
Henry Lipka
Bernice Loring
James Mackey
James Martin
John Martz
Lillian Maus
Stella McKee
Mildred Moriarty
Elizabeth Nash
Jesse Pacias
Raymond Parent
Elizabeth Schinkel
Lucille Schupbach
Margaret Sheehan
Gladys Sinicrope
Victoria Tenute

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