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Risking the Future,
Life and Spirituality of Félix de Jesús Rougier, M.Sp.S.

by Ricardo Zimbrón, M.Sp.S.

The Venerable Fr. Félix de Jes Rougier was born in Meilhaud, France, on December 17, 1859. He was ordained a priest in the Society of Mary at the age of 27. He was a human being with limitations and failins, however, a man who single-mindedly pursued his lifetime goal: to do the will of the Heavenly Father.

He pursued his ideal amid internal and external strife, in the darkness of a faith put to the test, hoping against all odds, suffering from the misunderstandings of many of his brethren. At the same time, he earned the love of many by his gentleness and kindness.

He came to Mexico in 1902 after six years of missionary work in Colombia. It was here where he had a providential encounter with Conchita on February 4, 1903. Through her the Lord made him discover his vocation to the and his mission as Founder of the Missionaries of the Holy Spirit.

Ten years would go by before he could get the permission of his superiors to found the Congregation, but with the restriction that he not leave the  Society of Mary. He founded the Congregation of the Missionaries of the Holy Spirit in the Chapel of the Roses, in the Basilica of our Lady of Guadalupe, in Mexico City, on December 25, 1914. After many years of patient longing to be a Missionary of the Holy Spirit, finally, in 1926, his superiors granted him permission to become a member of the Congregation he founded.

The latter part of Fr. Felix's life was taken up largely with his labors to establish the Works of the Cross in cooperation with Conchita, a widow and mystic. In the midst of the revolutionary turmoil in Mexico he founded the Missionaries of the Holy Spirit, a congregation devoted to Jesus Christ, as Priest and Victim. Fr. Felix was also instrumental in having Mexico consecrated to the Holy Spirit (October 12, 1924).

Besides the Missionaries of the Holy Spirit, Fr. Felix founded three other congregations for women: The Daughters of the Holy Spirit (1924), The Guadalupan Missionaries of the Holy Spirit (1930), and the Oblate Sisters of Jesus Priest (1937).

On February 15, 2000, the heroic virtues of Fr. Felix were approved by the Vatican and on July 1st John Paul II declares him Venerable. His process of canonization gets closer to being fulfilled.

Powerpoint presentation: Fr. Felix, his vocation to priesthood and his understanding of it

The following are excerpts from the book Risking the Future Life and Spirituality of the Venerable Félix de Jesús Rougier, M.Sp.S. by Ricardo Zimbrón L., M.Sp.S.
Permission granted by Fr. Domenico Di Raimondo, M.Sp.S.

Loving Attention to God

Father Félix summarized prayer outside the chapel as paying LOVING ATTENTION TO GOD, and he explained  it thus:
- Do you know the sunflower?
- Yes.
- Well, just as the flower follows the sun from morning till night, so our heart can be looking for God all day, and this the LOVING ATTENTION.

"Loving attention consists of gazing on God our Father. But when we look at Him, He also looks at us; and today I would like lo write something for you about this gaze of the Father:

"This gaze has been on me forever, because it is the gaze of God and it will be over me for all eternity. That gaze fills me with joy, fortitude and confidence, it gives me strength and sustains me. It tells me: Love! Come! Climb to where I am and talk to me, because you are my beloved son! Other times it tells me: Silence! Be quiet! Listen to me! Other times it says: Be humble, be little in my sight. And it invites me, and accompanies me and never leaves me alone. That gaze is my heaven on earth: it warms me, it refreshes me, it gives me life, it kills me and resurrects me at the same time. It is the gaze of God Himself, who takes me from this world and attracts my soul to follow in His wake. And if I yield to small temptations, that gaze pricks me like a thorn and purifies and cleanses me, because it is LOVE. And my soul remains closer than before to the heart of God, who wants it all for Himself. Oh, gaze of the Father, gaze of love, do not turn from me and my brothers! Make us pure, loving, happy and saintly!

"Being LOVINGLY ATTENTIVE TO GOD, is being in love with God; it is a strong passion, which consists of not being able to forget either the Father, or Jesus or the Holy Spirit."


"Jesus tells us that if we wish to be his disciples we have to follow him carrying 'our cross every day.'  So, without a cross, we cannot follow Jesus. But this daily cross does not consist of doing penance, but rather of offering God with love everything that is difficult for us: religious observance, patience with the rest, the faithful fulfillment of our duties, prayer when we find ourselves in a time of spiritual aridity, overcoming the temptations to fulfill the commandments... All of this is "the daily cross.'

"To be self-sacrificing is to say many times during the day: "Nothing for me, all for Jesus."

"The most perfect advice I can give you regarding this point is what our spirituality points out: To be victims in union with Jesus who always offered Himself to the Father, moved by the great love that the Holy Spirit had poured out on Him.

"Do you understand the Spirituality of the Cross? It is to be self-sacrificing, it is to carry one's cross together with Jesus."

The Father

One day, a novice asked Father Félix:

- Why don't you write a book for us on the devotion to the Father?

Father Félix answered:

- That is not necessary, my son, that book is already written; it is called the Gospel.

"Really, can we call ourselves disciples of Jesus if our love is not for the Father? And really, do we need another book besides the Gospel to learn this truth?

"Union with Jesus to go to the Father under the impulse of the Spirit, is the center of all of our spiritual life. But let us not lose sight of the fact that it is the Father who first leads us to Jesus: 'No one comes to me if my Father does not bring him.'

"Give thanks to the beloved Father for so many gifts. He sent Jesus to us, and He sent us the Holy Spirit (Jn 14:24; 16). We owe everything to the Father... He also gave us Mary, our Mother. And He gave us the gift of our vocation, and with it so many other favors.

"I have no doubt that it is the Holy Spirit who leads me more and more towards the Divine Father, because the Holy Spirit is who makes each of us, little by little, a copy of Jesus."

The Son

"If we do not attain an intimate union with Christ, we will not carry out the will of God. Our life, beloved children, even to our last breath, must be nothing else than to continue the work of Jesus, under his loving impulse.

"To copy Jesus, to be transformed into Him, this is the ideal of ideals; the rest is not important.

Fr. Félix told the following to four young men who took the habit of missionaries of the Holy Spirit:

"Our habit says a lot, because it has the inscriptions: JHS, which means JESUS, SAVIOR OF MEN. That indicates your mission and your ideal. You are destined by God to save thousands and thousands of souls. And I have told you not what they are, but what the missionaries of the Holy Spirit aspire to be. You are called to be what Jesus was, for the glory of the Father. When one is another Jesus, he is truly a savior...So you must say frequently: I want to be another Jesus, whatever the cost. That is why you have come here, to work to be another Jesus.

"Our way is Jesus crucified. Be like a host consecrated to Jesus: full of Jesus, our Teacher and model. A missionary of the Holy Spirit ought to be a voluntary martyr, accepting every cross for the love of Jesus, martyr to his duty even to death, martyr to his apostolate until he receives the crown. This is to be a copy of Jesus.

"God, God, God!... I have repeated it thousands of times and now I also say often: Jesus, Jesus, Jesus!... And when I say JESUS, I see everything that He has done for us... For love of each of us, He gave up everything... Is it not fitting that we give ourselves to Him and that we love Him without measure?

"More Tabernacle, my sons, more Tabernacle every day!

"Our Spirituality is one of love for the Eucharist Jesus. Let us keep our heart in the Tabernacle, next to the Heart of Jesus which is on fire, so that He will kindle in us His fire and His love."

The Holy Spirit

Fr. Félix often explained why the symbol of the Holy Spirit (the dove) is over the Cross and the Heart of Christ in the symbol of the Works of the Cross, and when he explained it, he always referred to the text of the Letter of the Hebrews: "Through the Holy Spirit, Christ offered himself to God as a blameless sacrifice." (Heb. 9:14).

"What was the essence of the life of Jesus? To be docile to the Holy Spirit in order to do the will of the Divine Father in everything.

"The same is essential in your life. You are truly religious if the day your die you can truthfully say: Father, since I entered the novitiate I never wanted to do my will, but always yours, with the light and strength of the Holy Spirit.

"Dear sons, consider your sublime vocation and give of yourselves so that the Holy Spirit abide in your souls and possess them fully.

"Under the impulse of the Holy Spirit we will imitate Jesus, in His obedient love of his Father and in His humble love of men.

"Aware that only the Holy Spirit can transform us into Christ, we will consecrate ourselves to Him and will be docile to His inspirations.

"Predestined to reproduce the image of His Son, we will let ourselves be guided by the Holy Spirit until we are transformed into Jesus crucified. Only this Divine Spirit who abides in our hearts will transform us into a permanent offering, together with Jesus, and will lead us to the full knowledge of the mystery of God and of the Cross. Therefore, our vocation consecrates us in a special way to the Holy Spirit and asks us that we be most devoted to this Holy Spirit." 

"The union with Jesus to go to the Father, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, is the center of all our spiritual life."



We search for the will of God. In the first place, we must look for it in terms of love. And what are we asked to do? To love Him with all our heart, with all our soul, with all our strength; but also to love His creatures, especially those He loved the most. The first place belongs to the Most Holy Mother of Jesus.

"When you participate in the Eucharist, take your place very near the Mother of Jesus, there at the foot of the Cross, where St. John was. She will teach you to offer this holy sacrifice.

"Win in this life the place in the heart of Mary that you wish to occupy in it for all eternity.

"Oh, Mary, my beloved Mother, I consecrate myself to you with all the energy of my soul. Today, tomorrow and all the days of my life I want to be yours, I wish to unite intimately to yours, and to try to imitate your love, your purity, and your humility."


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