Welcome to the office of the Oblate General Postulation!
Oblate history is filled with the names of persons who gave their lives to Christ so as to be missionaries to the poor. Their heroism and generosity should never be forgotten. Therefore we feel an obligation to ensure that their memory continues to inspire today’s missionaries.
The General Postulation´s responsibility
It is the duty of the General Postulation Office to study and present to the diocesan curia and the Holy See, for beatification and/or canonization, the causes of Missionary Oblates who have shown concrete signs of holiness in the heroic exercise of all virtues, or who died as martyrs. The office also works on the causes of other persons who have lived their own vocation in some sort of relationship to the Oblate congregation.
The official recognition of presumed holiness by the Church does not add greater glory to the saints, who are in heaven. Rather, it serves to glorify God, as he is the source of all holiness. The example of so many saints makes it evident that the Church here on earth can be holy in her members. It can stimulate everyone to follow the example of holy men and women, and to ask for their precious intercession with God, from whom every good comes and who is Supreme Love, revealed in Jesus Christ.
The proclamation of an outstanding missionary as a saint will also help the Church and the Oblate Congregation to better understand and live out Oblate spirituality and the Oblate mission. Every canonization will be beneficial to the faith life of the local Church and the edification of fellow Oblates and other religious. Often, a canonization will positively illustrate a particular aspect of the Oblate charism: an exceptional zeal for the proclamation of Jesus Christ and the courage to give one’s life to the point of martyrdom; a constant search for holiness to a heroic level; the promotion of social justice and reconciliation to an outstanding degree; the founding of a local Church; sanctification through humble service of the brethren and the poor; etc.
The General Postulation: A work with his own Oblate tradition
Because of its importance to the Oblate mission, the General Postulation Office has existed since 1891. The Postulator Generals have been: 1. Fr. Casimir Augier (1891-1894), 2. Fr. Joseph Lemius (1894-1923), Fr. Théophile Ortolan (1926-1929), 4. Fr. Auguste Esteve (1929-1932), 5. Fr. Ferdinand Thiry (1932-1945), 6. Fr. Francesco S. Cianculli (1945-1953), 7. Fr. Giuseppe Morabito (1953-1962), 8. Fr. Angelo Mitri (1962-1984), 9. Fr. James FitzPatrick (1987-2000), 10. Fr. Francis Santucci (2000-2006), 11. Fr. Joaquín Martínez Vega (2006-2014), 12. Fr. Thomas Klosterkamp (since 2014).
The concrete work and procedures of the Oblate Postulation Office today
Since the publication of the Apostolic Constitution Divinus perfectionis Magister (1983), which followed the promulgation of the revised Code of Canon Law (1983), and the subsequent Normae servandae in Inquisitionibus ad Episcopis faciendis in Causis Sanctorum (1983) issued by the Papal Congregation for the Causes of Saints, the initial phases of the canonization process are entrusted to the local Churches. Consequently, the Roman Oblate Postulation Office follows the same procedure in starting a cause. The Postulation follows a Ten Step Procedure towards Canonization.
Oblate Causes in Process
Presently, the General Postulation Office is working on the causes of eleven Oblates in the Roman phase. These Oblate causes alone include 37 biographies, 37 lived missionary lives, and 37 examples of holiness by our members. These examples, from different epochs and circumstances, different countries and cultures, different missionary works and pastoral tasks, give a clear message to every single Oblate in today’s world: Holiness is possible! – The causes are:
- Saint Charles Joseph Eugene de Mazenod (1782-1861)
- Blessed Joseph Gerard (1831-1914)
- Blessed Józef Cebula (1902-1941)
- Blessed 22 Oblate Spanish Martyrs (+ 1936)
- Blessed 6 Oblate Laotian Martyrs (+ 1960-1967)
- Venerable Vital Grandin (1829-1902)
- Venerable Carlo Domenico Albini (1790-1839)
- Venerable Anthony Kowalczyk (1866-1947)
- Servant of God Ovide Charlebois (1862-1933)
- Servant of God Victor Lelièvre (1876-1956)
- Servant of God Bastiampillai Anthonipillai Thomas (1886-1964)
Non-Oblate Causes in Process:
The General Postulator´s office also works extensively on the causes of others who have lived their own vocation in some sort of relationship with the Oblate congregation. These are at present:
- Saint Joseph Vas (1651-1711),
- Blessed Maria Anna Blondin (1809-1890),
- Blessed Maria Rosa Durocher (1811-1849),
- Blessed Nicolas Bunkerd (Xunkim) Kitbamrung (1895-1944),
- Servant of God Johannes Maria Haw (1871-1949),
- Servant of God Paul James Francis Wattson (1863-1940)
Other possible upcoming Oblate causes:
Some Oblates Causes are still at the beginning or at the Diocesan level:
- Fr. Michael Jean Alexandre Guillame (1871-1951)
- Fr. Ludwik Wrodarczyk (1907-1943)
- Cardinal Thomas Benjamin Cooray (1901-1988)
- Bishop Pierre Fallaize (1887-1964)
Other Oblate witnesses:
The General Postulation prepared a list of: Missionary Oblates who have died a tragic death
You are most welcome to get further information through the different links on our homepage.
Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate
Via Aurelia 290
00165 Rome – Italy