28 October 2018

Columban Fr Robert O'Rourke RIP

Fr Robert I. O'Rourke
13 June 1932 - 3 October 2018

Fr Robert I. O’Rourke died on 3 October 2018 at St Elizabeth Manor, Bristol, Rhode Island, USA. Born on 13 June 1932 he was the son of the late Eugene Joseph O’Rourke and Mary Bridget (O'Connor) O’Rourke. He was the brother of the late Joseph, Timothy, Richard, Eugene, Br Terrance O’Rourke of Glenmary Home Missions, Margaret Baffoe and Loretta Coogan.  He is survived by many nieces and nephews. 

Chapel of St James
Archbishop Quigley Preparatory Seminary, Chicago [Wikipedia]

Young Bob attended St Ailbe's Grade School and Archbishop Quigley Preparatory Seminary, Chicago. He later attended St. Mary of the Lake Seminary and after spiritual year at St Columban's,, Silver Creek, New York,  he went to St Columban's Major Seminary in Milton, Massachusetts.  He was ordained on 20 December 20, 1958 in the Seminary Chapel by Bishop Eric MacKenzie, auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Boston.

In the summer of 1959 Father Bob did a course in Social Science in Antigonish, Nova Scotia and in December 1959 he was appointed to Burma (now Myanmar).

St Columban's Cathedral, Myitkyina, Myanmar [Wikipedia]

In November 1962 he arrived in Myitkyina and began language study in Tingsing. The following November Father Bob was assistant in Makawkzup in the Myitkyina diocese and in October 1965 he opened up a new parish in Kamaing about 65 miles west of Myitkyina.  In September 1966 the Burmese government compelled Father Bob to leave Burma before the end of that year due to new visa restrictions.

After returning to the United States he was appointed to do vocation work in Los Angeles in March 1967. He was appointed superior of the Los Angeles house in 1969.

In 1975 Father Bob was assigned to Lima Peru. Starting in May 1977 he began serving in Tahuantinsuyo where there was a charismatic ministry, youth groups and a catechumenate.  In December 1983 he was assigned to Huasahuasi.

Cathedral of St John the Evangelist, Lima, Peru [Wikipedia]

Fr Bob O’Rourke and Fr Michael Donnelly were the first resident priests in the parish for some time. Until leaving there in December1989, they worked a pastoral programme catering to the varied needs of the widespread parish. The majority of the people were potato farmers. During those years Tarma and adjoining areas were the scene of escalating terrorist violence on the part of the Maoist- Leninist group Sendero Luminoso, 'The Shining Path'. Many towns were without police or other civil authority. Fathers Bob and Michael continued to carry out their pastoral work while the terrorists became more audacious and brutal, generating an atmosphere of fear and tension throughout the country, especially in isolated zones such as Huasahuasi. When the priests were told by a reliable person that they were on a death-list and that the terrorists were coming to the town at Christmas, Fathers Bob and Michael prudently decided to go to Lima and left within days for their respective countries where they recuperated from the stress.

In January 1990 Father Bob was assigned to US Region of the Columbans. He became associate editor of Columban Mission magazine and at Easter 1991 he became Editor of the Regional Newsletter.

In August 1992 Father Bob began work with the Spanish Apostolate at Immaculate Conception Church in Grand Prairie, Texas. The people there appreciated his homilies for their stories and brevity. In 1998 he returned to Omaha as house bursar and presided over the 47th and final Annual Columban Festival there.  The Festival was the last of a successful cycle that at its peak, in the early 1970s, drew over 20,000 people to St Columban’s on a summer weekend and raised over $80,000 for the Society.  Father Bob noted that the Festival was less about funding than connecting with the local community. In October 2001 he was elected as Chairman of the Regional Reconciliation Board.

Father Bob retired to St Columban's, Bristol, Rhode Island, in March, 2004 where he resided in retirement, participating actively in community life for the last 14 years.

Fr O'Rourke was buried in St Mary's Cemetery, Bristol, RI, after the funeral Mass in the chapel at St Columban's. May he rest in peace.

St Columban, Bristol, RI, USA

Fr Bob O'Rourke served in Peru from 1975 till 1989.

25 October 2018

Columban Fr Gerard Dunn RIP

Fr Gerard Dunn
15 December 1937 - 24 September 2018

With the passing of Fr Gerard (Gerry) Dunn on 24 September 2018 the Region of Britain of the Columbans lost one of its most memorable characters.

Father Gerry was born on 15 December 1937 to a well-known Catholic family in Glasgow which had a mineral water business. He very much remained a Glaswegian at heart and in later years delighted in showing his fellow Columbans around his native city.

St Andrew's Cathedral, Glasgow [Wikipedia]

After his early education, Father Gerry followed his father into the medical profession.

Having qualified and practiced as a doctor in Glasgow for a relatively short time, he decided to embark on a different kind of healing ministry – as a Columban missionary priest.

He went to St Columban's, Dalgan Park, County Meath, Ireland, in 1962 and was ordained on 21 December 1967.  Because of an outbreak of foot and mouth disease in Britain that year, ordinations did not take place in Dalgan Park, which has a farm attached to it, because of strict Irish quarantine laws. So Father Gerry became the first and only Columban to be ordained on Scottish soil.

After ordination Father Gerry was assigned to Korea.

Within a few years he returned home in poor health and spent the remainder of his Columban life and ministry in Scotland, having ministered for a short time in a parish in Birmingham, England.

Legion of Mary altar [Wikipedia]

He engaged in mission awareness ministry, but gradually focused more and more on other ministries, such as promoting the Legion of Mary, leading pilgrimages to various shrines, and ministering to the small Chinese Catholic community in Glasgow. He learned enough Chinese to be able to celebrate Mass in that language.

St Patrick's Purgatory, Lough Derg, Ireland [Wikipedia]
Lough Derg is one of the places where Father Gerry regularly led pilgrimages from Glasgow.

When the Columban house in Glasgow closed in 2005 Father Gerry along with Fr Declan McNaughton, moved into the presbytery of St Gregory Barbarigo parish in Glasgow as the base for their continuing ministries.

The priests and people of the parish were very welcoming and supportive. Among the many ways Father Gerry endeared himself to the people in the parish was his preparation and distribution of large quantities of nutritious soup.

Father Gerry will be remembered as a lively conversationalist, witty storyteller and entertaining singer. He will also be remembered for his fearless promotion of the teaching of the Church as he understood it. Conversations with him tended to be blend of serious discussion on some controversial issue and frequent amusing anecdotes.

Father Gerry was a wounded healer who courageously coped with poor health for many years in a spirit of great faith.

In 2013 he retired to Nazareth House in Glasgow which is where he died. A large congregation attended his Funeral Mass in the Nursing Home Chapel on 28 September 2018.

Father Gerry’s nephew, Fr Stephen Dunn, was the principal concelebrant and was joined by more than twenty priests, including five Columbans. In his homily, Fr Dan Horgan, on behalf of the Columbans, thanked the Dunn family and others for the great care Father Gerry received and also spoke of his unique gifts and admirable faith.

Father Gerry was buried with his parents in St Peter's Cemetery, also known as Dalbeth Cemetery, Glasgow.

May he rest in peace.

Dalbeth Cemetery [Source]

A Personal Note

Father Gerry joined the Columbans a year after me but joined our class for theology in 1964. I lived with him for five months in Glasgow in 2002 while on a two-year assignment in Britain. I found to be true what the late Columban Fr Con Campion once said to me - he had lived with Father Gerry for some years in our Glasgow house - that there wasn't a kinder Columban. Before and after his funeral Mass I was chatting with persons who had known him and they all mentioned the great influence he had on their lives.

He had a great sense of humour and there was no one better to tell jokes about 'thrifty' Scotsmen. He was also a good singer. He had a number of songs in his repertoire but his favourite was A Scottish Soldier, written in 1960 by the late Andy Stewart who sings it here.

In those days Mary set out and went with haste to a Judean town in the hill country (Luke 1:39).

May our Blessed Mother, whom Father Gerry loved so dearly all his life, lead him to the hills of home.

24 October 2018

Jesus asks, 'What do you want me to do for you?' Sunday Reflections, 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B

Christ Healing the Blind (detail), Lucas van Leyden [Web Gallery of Art]

Readings (New American Bible: Philippines, USA)

Readings (Jerusalem Bible: Australia, England & Wales, India [optional], Ireland, New Zealand, Pakistan, Scotland, South Africa)

Gospel Mark 10:46-52 (New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Catholic Edition)

They came to Jericho. As Jesus and his disciples and a large crowd were leaving Jericho, Bartimaeus son of Timaeus, a blind beggar, was sitting by the roadside. When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout out and say, ‘Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!’ Many sternly ordered him to be quiet, but he cried out even more loudly, ‘Son of David, have mercy on me!’ Jesus stood still and said, ‘Call him here.’ And they called the blind man, saying to him, ‘Take heart; get up, he is calling you.’ So throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus. Then Jesus said to him, ‘What do you want me to do for you?’ The blind man said to him, ‘My teacher, let me see again.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Go; your faith has made you well.’ Immediately he regained his sight and followed him on the way.

Fr John Burger is an American Columban who served as a member of the Columban General Council from 2006 until 2012. He spent the early years of his priesthood in Japan and tells a wonderful story about a blind man who was a member of a prayer group in a parish where he served. Each week the group met to share on the following Sunday’s gospel and to pray. Father John was a little nervous when this Sunday’s gospel came up, wondering how his blind friend would respond.

He and the others were astonished when the man shared that this was one of his favourite passages in the gospels. Why? Because Jesus asked Bartimaeus, What do you want me to do for you? The blind parishioner went on to say that he was quite happy as he was. He had his own apartment and he knew his way around. But if the Lord were to ask him directly, What do you want me to do for you? He would tell him that there were parts of his life where he would like Jesus to shed his light, even though he would hesitate to ask him to do so.

Probably the blind Japanese man had experienced people, with every good intention, wanting to help him when he needed no help. On a pilgrimage to Lourdes in Easter Week 1991 with a group of persons with physical disabilities I shared a room with our leader, Joe, able-bodied, like myself, and Tony and Tom who weren’t. Both needed help in some very personal matters. However, I learned very quickly from Tom not to do something for him when he could do it himself. That was a very good lesson for me.

Jesus didn’t presume that Bartimaeus wanted his sight back. He asked him, What do you want me to do for you? The blind man, who had shouted Jesus, Son of David, a title indicating he was the Messiah, answered, My teacher, let me see again.

Do I allow Jesus to ask me, What do you want me to do for you? And if I allow him do I have the faith of Bartimaeus to tell him what I want him to do for me? Jesus responded to the faith of the blind man: Go; your faith has made you well. And the blind beggar’s response to this was a further expression of his faith: And immediately he regained his sight and followed him on the way.

Christ Healing the Blind, Nicolas Colombel [Web Gallery of Art]

On 11 October 2012 in hishomily at the Mass marking the opening of the Year of Faith and the 5oth anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council Pope Benedict said, The Year of Faith which we launch today is linked harmoniously with the Church’s whole path over the last fifty years: from the Council, through the Magisterium of the Servant of God Paul VI, who proclaimed a Year of Faith in 1967, up to the Great Jubilee of the year 2000, with which Blessed John Paul II re-proposed to all humanity Jesus Christ as the one Saviour, yesterday, today and forever. Between these two Popes, Paul VI and John Paul II, there was a deep and profound convergence, precisely upon Christ as the centre of the cosmos and of history, and upon the apostolic eagerness to announce him to the world. Jesus is the centre of the Christian faith. The Christian believes in God whose face was revealed by Jesus Christ. He is the fulfilment of the Scriptures and their definitive interpreter. Jesus Christ is not only the object of the faith but, as it says in the Letter to the Hebrews, he is “the pioneer and the perfecter of our faith” (12:2).

Bartimaeus seemed to have grasped something of this, calling Jesus by a Messianic title, Son of David, putting his faith in him and following him on the way.


Fr Cyril Axelrod CSsR is the only deaf-blind priest in the world. He was born profoundly deaf but became blind more than thirteen years ago from Usher Syndrome. He ministers to people who are deafblind and to people who are deaf. You can read about him here. In this video Father Cyril speaks to seminarians.

When I was in secondary school we studied some of the poetry of John Milton, most of which I disliked. But his sonnet On His Blindness was an exception.

When I consider how my light is spent
Ere half my days in this dark world and wide,
And that one talent which is death to hide
Lodg'd with me useless, though my soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker, and present
My true account, lest he returning chide;
‘Doth God exact day-labour, light denied?’
I fondly ask. But Patience to prevent
That murmur, soon replies: ‘God doth not need
Either man's work or his own gifts; who best
Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best. His state
Is kingly. Thousands at his bidding speed
And post o'er land and ocean without rest:
They also serve who only stand and wait.’

22 October 2018

Columban Fr Thomas J. Vaughan RIP

Fr Thomas J. Vaughan
20 February 1928 - 13 September 2018

Fr Thomas J. Vaughan died peacefully on 13 September 2018 at St. Elizabeth Manor, Bristol, Rhode Island, USA.

Cathedral of St Paul, Saint Paul, MN [Wikipedia]

Born in Saint Paul, Minnesota, he was the son the late Patrick and Kathleen (Fuller) Vaughan. He is survived his sister Loretta Gallagher as well as many nieces, nephews, friends and brother priests. He was also the brother of the late Patrick Vaughan, Muriel Vaughan, Donna Marie Smith, Richard Vaughan, Jerome Vaughan, Mary Alice Vaughan,and Delores Gibbons.

Cretin-Derham High School, Saint Paul [Wikipedia]
[Cretin High School and Derham Hall amalgamated in 1987]

Fr Vaughan was a graduate of Cretin High School, Saint Paul, and then served in the US Army. He went on to graduate from the College of St Thomas before joining the Society of Saint Columban and was ordained in 1956. He served mainly in the Philippines but also in Belize, Chicago and Saint Paul.

National Shrine of Our Lady of Poon Bato, Botolan, Zambales, Philippines [Wikipedia]

May Father Tom rest in peace.

Cathedral of St Paul, Saint Paul, MN

18 October 2018

'Whoever wishes to be first among you must be slave of all.' Sunday Reflections, 29th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B

Call of the Sons of Zebedee, Marco Basaiti [Web Gallery of Art]

Readings (New American Bible: Philippines, USA)

Readings (Jerusalem Bible: Australia, England & Wales, India [optional], Ireland, New Zealand, Pakistan, Scotland, South Africa)

Gospel Mark 10:35-45 (New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Catholic Edition)

James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came forward to Jesus and said to him, ‘Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you.’ And he said to them, ‘What is it you want me to do for you?’ And they said to him, ‘Grant us to sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your glory.’ But Jesus said to them, ‘You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?’ They replied, ‘We are able.’ Then Jesus said to them, ‘The cup that I drink you will drink; and with the baptism with which I am baptized, you will be baptized; but to sit at my right hand or at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared.’
When the ten heard this, they began to be angry with James and John. So Jesus called them and said to them, ‘You know that among the Gentiles those whom they recognize as their rulers lord it over them, and their great ones are tyrants over them. But it is not so among you; but whoever wishes to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be slave of all. For the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many.’
Christ in the Carpenter's Shop, Georges de la Tour [Web Gallery of Art]
In May 2008 I unexpectedly received an email from Michael in Australia whom I hadn't met or heard from since the summer of 1967 when we were working together on a building (construction) site in Dublin. I had just been ordained subdeacon and was to be ordained priest in December of that year. The general foreman on the site was my father.

In a later email Michael said, Your father was a great role model for me to try and emulate. I remember the first job that I met your father on, as he was the general foreman. It was the first job for me as a journeyman carpenter and it was a pleasant experience coming to work with such a pleasant gentleman giving the instructions.

My father a week before his sudden death on 11 August 1987
I wasn't at all surprised at Michael's words as I had heard others who had worked with my father, John, say similar things. And when I worked under him myself that summer I could see what I had known before: he led by example. He never swore, never shouted at anyone and was most helpful to young workers and to young architects. He sometimes would laugh at home at the lack of experience of the latter in practical matter. But he also knew that you can only learn through experience - and with the help of mentors. And he was a real mentor to the same young architects. 
Many times before I took an important examination or was about to do something for the first time Dad would say, The experience will be good for you. There was never the hint of a demanding expectation. And I have found his words to have been true.
But I often heard him speak with gratitude, respect and affection of general foremen under whom he had worked as an apprentice and as a young carpenter. One was Mr Grace, whom I never met. Two of his sons became Capuchin priests and two of his daughters religious sisters. Another was Mr Boyle, whom I did know. He and his wife in their old age were a handsome couple.
Dad was the same at home as he was on the construction site. He never raised his voice to his two sons or to our mother. He was courteous with everyone he met and was just himself in every situation.
His authority came from within. He was responsible and loving in everything he did. Every morning, after returning from a very early Mass, he prepared my mother's breakfast before heading for work. He started work on time and ended on time. But he wasn't a slave to the clock.
With my parents John and Mary and my brother Paddy after my ordination in St Mary's Pro-Cathedral Dublin, 20 December 1967
This Sunday is observed by the Church as Mission Sunday: Christian Families are Missionary Families. I don't think that my parents, or any of their contemporaries in Ireland, saw themselves as missionaries. But they passed on the faith without being aware of it. When I was a child it was my father who took me to Sunday Mass. My mother went to a later Mass as she had to take care of my brother when he was still very young. My Dad used to take me to Solemn High Masses on days such as Easter Monday and Whit (Pentecost) Monday in the churches of the Dominicans and the Capuchins in Dublin. I didn't appreciate this at the time.
My mother used to take my brother and me to visit seven churches on the afternoon of Holy Thursday before the changes in Holy Week ceremonies in 1955 when they were moved from the morning to the afternoon/evening. There was solemn adoration of the Blessed Sacrament in each church or chapel we visited. Again, I didn't appreciate this at the time.
When I went to the Philippines in 1971 I was astonished to discover that this same practice, known there as Visita Iglesia, was very much alive in the larger cities, on the night of Holy Thursday, with many young people walking from one church to the next. Again, I thanked God for what my mother had invited me to do every Holy Thursday up to 1954 when I very reluctantly joined her.
Among the gifts I received from God through my parents was the living out of the words in today's gospel, whoever wishes to become great among you must be your servant. They served each other and they served us their two sons. They did this day in and day out, whatever their feelings might have been at any particular moment.
I can see clearly now that they were missionaries in a very real sense, living out the promises they made when my brother and I were baptised. (Our Dad wasn't present at my brother's baptism because he was attending his mother's funeral that same day. In those days baptisms took place within a few days of birth, a commendable practice.)

In the current rite of the baptism of a child the priest asks the parents: You have asked to have your child baptized. In doing so you are accepting the responsibility of training him (her) in the practice of the faith. It will be your duty to bring him (her) up to keep God's commandments as Christ taught us, by loving God and our neighbor. Do you clearly understand what you are undertaking?

In responding with Yes, we do, parents undertake to be missionaries to their own children. I thank God for the Yes of my parents.

Bishop Edward Galvin, Columban Co-founder, baptising an infant in China
[I have had problems formatting this post.]

11 October 2018

'Let only your will be done in me . . .' Sunday Reflections, 28th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B

This Sunday's Gospel in Filipino Sign Language

Readings (New American Bible: Philippines, USA)

Readings (Jerusalem Bible: Australia, England & Wales, India [optional], Ireland, New Zealand, Pakistan, Scotland, South Africa)

Gospel Mark 10:17-30 [or Mk 10:17-27] (New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Catholic Edition)

As Jesus was setting out on a journey, a man ran up and knelt before him, and asked him, ‘Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?’  Jesus said to him, ‘Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone. You know the commandments: “You shall not murder; You shall not commit adultery; You shall not steal; You shall not bear false witness; You shall not defraud; Honour your father and mother.”’ He said to him, ‘Teacher, I have kept all these since my youth.’ Jesus, looking at him, loved him and said, ‘You lack one thing; go, sell what you own, and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.’ When he heard this, he was shocked and went away grieving, for he had many possessions.
Then Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, ‘How hard it will be for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!’ And the disciples were perplexed at these words. But Jesus said to them again, ‘Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.’ They were greatly astounded and said to one another, ‘Then who can be saved?’ Jesus looked at them and said, ‘For mortals it is impossible, but not for God; for God all things are possible.’
[Peter began to say to him, ‘Look, we have left everything and followed you.’ Jesus said, ‘Truly I tell you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields, for my sake and for the sake of the good news, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this age—houses, brothers and sisters, mothers and children, and fields, with persecutions—and in the age to come eternal life.]

This incident is also recounted in the gospels of St Matthew and St Luke. It is Matthew who tells us that the man who approached Jesus was young. Luke describes him as a ruler or aristocrat, depending on the translation. But it is only Mark who writes, Jesus, looking at him, loved him . . .

John Profumo (1915 - 2006) [Wikipedia]
During my second summer vacation after entering the seminary, the summer of 1963, the biggest story in Britain and Ireland was that of a senior member of the Conservative Party and of the British government, John Profumo. He had served with distinction in the British army in World War II, reaching the rank of Brigadier (General). He was independently wealthy. He became involved with a prostitute, Christine Keeler, who also had relations with  the senior Soviet naval attaché in London. Profumo denied in parliament that he had an improper relationship with Keeler. This was later shown to be untrue. He was later forced to resign for having lied to parliament. Before resigning from all his positions he confessed to his wife, Valerie Hobson, and she stood by him.

John Profumo disappeared from public life and spent many years as a volunteer washing dishes and cleaning toilets in a place called Toynbee Hall, a charity in the East End of London. I do not know anything about the faith of John Profumo, whose paternal ancestors were Italian aristocrats. He had the inherited title 'Fifth Baron Profumo', though he didn't use it. But Lord Longford (1905 - 2001), a Labour politician and social reform campaigner whose Catholic faith - he was a convert from Anglicanism - was the bedrock of everything he did, was quoted as saying that he, felt more admiration [for Profumo] than [for] all the men I've known in my lifetime'.

Unlike the man in the gospel, John Profumo had sinned. He lost his reputation but regained it as years later people came to know what he had been doing.

Blessed Charles de Foucauld (1858 - 1916) [Wikipedia]

Fr Charles de Foucauld, was assassinated in the Sahara on 1 December 1916 when John Profumo was almost two. Like Profumo, he was born into wealth. Unlike the man in the gospel, he became a notorious playboy and was thrown out of the French army because of his behaviour. He went through a conversion experience at 28 and, again unlike the man in today's gospel, gave up everything. His subsequent journey in the Catholic faith led him to the priesthood and to the Sahara to live the life of Nazareth as he understood it.

Brother Charles, as he was known, died alone. He had drawn up a rule for a religious congregation to live the life of Nazareth in the desert. I once read that one person joined him for a short while. But in the 1920s his life and writings led to the founding of two religious congregations, the Little Brothers of Jesus and the Little Sisters of Jesus, both of which have communities in the Philippines. The Little Sisters have a community in Northern Ireland. There are a number of other congregations that have adapted the rule that Brother Charles wrote.

Little Sister Goneswary Subramaniam LSJ [Misyon]

The Little Brothers and the Little Sisters live among the poor, support themselves by taking manual jobs. The January-February 2005 issue of Misyon, the Columban magazine in the Philippines of which I was then editor, carried an article, Working Sisters, in which Little Sister Goneswary Subramaniam LSJ from Sri Lanka writes about her job sewing in a garment factory in Quezon City, Metro Manila, and Little Sister Annarita Zamboni LSJ from Italy about working as a lavandera, a laundry woman. Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament is at the heart of the life of each community of the Little Brothers, some of whom are priests, and of the Little Sisters and neighbours are invited to join.

Blessed Charles was a diocesan priest, though definitely not a conventional one. But a more conventional diocesan priest, played a central role in his conversion, Fr Henri Huvelin.

Fr Henri Huvelin [Wikipedia]

Among the groups inspired by Blessed Charles is the Jesus Caritas Fraternity of Priests, a movement that adapts his spirituality to the lives of pastoral priests, mainly diocesan, though not exclusively. [That website has links to other branches of the De Foucauld family, including the Little Brothers and the Little Sisters.]

Peter, troubled by the words of Jesus, said, Look, we have left everything and followed you. Jesus replied, Truly I tell you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields, for my sake and for the sake of the good news,  who will not receive a hundredfold now in this age—houses, brothers and sisters, mothers and children, and fields, with persecutions—and in the age to come eternal life.

Charles de Foucauld experienced the joy of doing God's will, with persecutions in his violent death, but the houses and brothers and sisters . . . didn't come till some years after his death. And when Cardinal José Saraiva Martins beatified Brother Charles in Rome on 13 November 2005 the Church confirmed that he had indeed attained eternal life from the moment of his death and that he was a model of holiness who could guide us as we try to follow Jesus.

Blessed Charles saw clearly what the young man in the gospel, who didn't sin but had no idea of the riches he was spurning, didn't see - that Jesus was looking upon him and loved him

1959 French stamp in honour of Charles de Foucauld [Wikipedia]

Prayer of Abandonment of Blessed Charles de Foucauld

I abandon myself into your hands;
do with me what you will.
Whatever you may do, I thank you:
I am ready for all, I accept all.

Let only your will be done in me,
and in all your creatures -
I wish no more than this, O Lord.

Into your hands I commend my soul:
I offer it to you with all the love of my heart,
for I love you, Lord, and so need to give myself,
to surrender myself into your hands without reserve,
and with boundless confidence,
for you are my Father.

This prayer is recited in the Charles de Foucauld video above beginning at 3:38. Below is a video setting of the prayer.