Vignettes and Cameos
Vignette 21

While the dynamic instruction of the letter of August 24, 1839, is addressed to the Marianists, who consecrate their lives to assisting in Mary's Apostolic Mission, the message certainly applies to the whole of Christianity. The social orientation of Father Chaminade's teaching – his Mystical Body framework and social consciousness – focuses on the Church at large and all society.

The Founder seems to inquire if the maternal function of the New Eve ended with her earthly life. Then he delights in replying with St. Paul that "The gifts of God are without repentance" (Rom 11: 29). Father Chaminade employed this text to enlighten us concerning the divine plan in God's conduct with the human race. If Mary has become Mother and Co-redemptrix, she will not cease to be so. If she has already crushed the head of the serpent, she will continue to crush it always. And we are called to assist her.

Cameo 21

Father Chaminade persuasively concludes the letter to the 1839 retreat preachers with a challenge to convey to all Marianists:

Ours is a great work, a magnificent work. If it is universal, it is because we are Missionaries of Mary, who has said to us as to the servants at Cana "Do whatever He tells you."

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