Part II – Priest of the Diocese of Agen (France)

“On June 2, 1860 I was ordained priest at Agen. The next day I said my 

first Mass at Marmande. One hundred and fifty children made their First 

Communion at this Mass. That evening I preached my first sermon before a 

considerable crowd. There I am, a priest, O my God; what shall I do to thank 

you for so great a grace; what shall I do to thank your divine Mother? It is 

she who has obtained for me this divine favor, for I was unworthy of it. What 

shall I do? First, I shall work at my sanctification since that is what you wish

 before everything. Then I shall work for the salvation of souls; I am a priest 

so as to fulfill this sublime mission. But while keeping in the foreground this 

double task, I shall propagate devotion to Your Holy and Immaculate 

Mother. Oh, yes! I know, O my God, what I owe to her!…I am what I am 

through the unique favor of the Most Holy Virgin; I wish to be a missionary 

of the Most Holy Virgin.”

“On the 1st of July 1862 I was installed as pastor of St. Victor. It was an 

extensive parish of four churches;…As there were few priests in the diocese, 

I was also named curate of another parish, St. Eulalie…I loved my people 

very much and I was happily busy. With the coming of Lent I prepared 

my parishioners for their Easter duty by sermons and frequent parish visits…

I had a good ritual. I had organized a society of young people for the 

chanting of the Divine Office. It was a means of attracting them and of 

interesting them. These services well chanted were an excellent means of 

bringing my people to church. It was necessary to forget no one.”


“I was happy in my parish, nevertheless, I always had in the depths of my 

heart the thought of the missions, which tormented me…Every time I read 

in the Gospel those words of Our Lord: ‘Go and teach all nations,’ my heart 

beat with emotion.”

4 August 1867

“I love my ministry, nothing is repugnant to me…But I always have the 

thought that far off, very far away, there are souls lacking missionaries to 

care for them. I again ask permission from my Superiors to leave. Again it is

 refused. However, I received information from Rome. If I make the request 

a year in advance, after a year it could no longer be withheld. Therefore, I 

made my request in a decisive way the fourth of August, feast of St. 


2 February 1868

“…The Dominican Fathers wish to carry the Gospel even to the end of the 

world; this is what I desire…”

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