June 2024 Issue

From the Provincial, Fr. Raymond Cook, OMI

Dear Friends in Christ,

I had the joyous pleasure of spending some time with our Superior General, Fr. Luis Ignacio (Chicho) Rois Alonso at the beginning of Lent. This was Fr. Chicho’s first visit to the United States since his election in September 2022. He has been busy traveling to many Oblate ministries and missions throughout the world.

Since taking over from Fr. Lou Studer, OMI, as Provincial last autumn, I too have been traveling, learning in detail about our ministries and missions, and meeting many Oblates, scholastics, employees, lay Associates—and, most importantly, co-missionaries like you.

On every visit I see the Oblate charism at work. My brother Oblates are there helping the poor and abandoned—in whatever direction the Holy Spirit is guiding us—working with the community to make it sustainable. I am refreshed and rejuvenated by that. We Oblates can’t take on every mission but, with the Holy Spirit’s guidance, we can make every Oblate mission both successful and sustainable.

Our founder, St Eugene de Mazenod, believed our youth are crucial to refresh the Church. And I see that.

  • In Cuba, the Oblates now have a children’s summer Bible Study. It shows how far we, and Cuba, have come. A quarter-century ago the Oblates were the first religious order let into the country after a decades-long prohibition against religion.
  • In Buffalo, New York, we are blessed to have both a thriving youth ministry and a thriving Oblate Associates group.
  • And in Tijuana, Mexico, a scholarship program enables young adults to break the cycle of poverty. Scholarship recipients are now giving back as doctors and nurses in a new medical clinic.

You can read about all these exciting developments in this issue.