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Mary, the Support of the Church


Jean-Claude Colin often spoke of Mary as the support of the Church at the beginning and at the end. This seems to be his way of referring to the inspiration Courveille experienced at Le Puy. Presented here is the dossier of texts gathered by J. Coste, S.M., in Acta Societatis Mariae, vol. 5, pp. 264-271. In several cases a wider context is offered than was needed for Coste’s purposes. These are marked with a (+) in the apparatus. At the end of the dossier is added a text of Fr. Peter Julian Eymard that also speaks of Mary as the support of the Church.

The support of the newborn Church and at the end of time

Text 12

January 31, 1849. Colin. Part of an outburst in the refectory occasioned by a young Marist speaking against teaching. [Coste text K = Mayet 7, 651f = OM 690 = FS 172, 23]:


“Messieurs, 15 centuries after the preaching of the Gospel, there appears all of a sudden a body of apostolic men. The name of Jesus has been reserved for them, and accordingly they imitate Him. Like Him, they prepare themselves in retirement; like Jesus, who only initiated His ministry at the age of thirty, they are ordained priests only at the age of thirty. It is the society which has done most good in the Church. And I dare say that their superiority comes from the fact that they oriented themselves towards teaching; that is the source of all the good which the Jesuits have done. In its turn also, 19 centuries after the founding of the Church, there comes a small society. The name of Mary has been held in store for it, as it were, and given to it by God. The blessed Virgin has said to it: ‘I was the support of the newborn Church; I shall be the support of the Church at the end of time.’ We must also follow the path of the Jesuits. My greatest ambition, one of the first ideas in establishing the Society, its first aim, is teaching. I have no hope in its future, I consider it as lost, if it does no teaching.”

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