Life and Spirituality of Félix de Jesús Rougier

Risking the Future
Life and Spirituality of the
Venerable Félix de Jesús Rougier, M.Sp.S
by Ricardo Zimbrón L., M.Sp.S.



  PreviousINDEX | Next    




In the previous chapter we saw how God the Father, the first person of the Most Holy Trinity, is central to the spirituality of Father Félix, which is none other than the spirituality of Christ, Priest of the Father and Offering to the Father.  

Let us now consider how the Word made Flesh, the eternal Son of the Father, born of Mary, is integrated in perfect unity in the spirituality of Father Félix.


Jesus tells us: "No one knows the Father but the Son, and those to whom the Son wishes to reveal Him" (Mt. 11:27). "I am the way, the truth and the life; no one can come to the Father but by me" (Jn. 14:6). “No one has ever seen God. The only Son, God, who is at the Father's side, has revealed him." (Jn. 1:18). "No one has seen the Father; the only one who has seen Him is He who has come from God." (Jn. 6:46).


Therefore, we cannot speak of love and devotion to the Father separate from the only way that leads to Him, the only one who knows the Father, the only one who can reveal Him to us.


On the other hand, if Jesus is He who knows the Father, who else can be the model of love and devotion to this Father? If He is the only Son by nature, who else can teach us to be truly His sons?

And, lastly, if we are children of the Father, it is because we participate in the same divine life of the Son:   "I am the true vine, and my Father is the vine grower. I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever remains in me and I in him will bear much fruit, because without me you can do nothing. Anyone who does not remain in me will be thrown out like a branch and wither; people will gather them and throw them into a fire and they will be burned." (Jn. 15: 1-6). Our spiritual union with Jesus, because we have believed in Him and because we have accepted Him with all our being, is what gives us the right to be children of God with Him and like Him: "To those who received him and believed in Him, He gave the privilege to become children of God. And they are children of God, not by natural birth which comes from the desire of a man, but because God has begotten them." (Jn. 1: 12).

Of the Biblical texts I have cited, there follows clearly the unity which exists between our relationship with the Father and our relationship with the Son. It is similar to the oneness of the road and the end, the river and the spring, the promise and the condition. It is the substantial unity enjoyed by the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

Let us now see some relevant texts selected from the letters and writings of Father Félix:


"Let us rejoice in the Cross of Our Lord Jesus Christ, in which lies our salvation, our life, our resurrection!"

"When we say 'THE CROSS', we must understand 'JESUS CHRIST CRUCIFIED'. We rejoice because by His crucifixion He rescued us, redeemed us, obtained for us all grace, and eternal life. We have all this thanks to Jesus, crucified for us. And we rejoice today with gratitude and love, as we contemplate what Jesus has done for us. He loved me and gave up His life for me." (Gal. 2: 20) (1)

"May the precious blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ purify and unceasingly water our souls, because it is a divine river that runs unceasingly in the Church to wash away our sins and to give us all divine life. I want you to have a strong devotion to the Precious Blood of Christ. We say 'Precious' because its 'PRICE' is infinite."  

"I believe I have never had the occasion to speak to you about this, but I will do so soon." (2)  

"I ask everything of the Father, and with complete trust, IN THE NAME OF JESUS, as the Church teaches us: 'Through Christ, Our Lord.'  Because I have nothing of my own that would make me worthy of being listened to by the Father, but I have Jesus, I have His merits. Ah, that Christ... Our Jesus! How much should we love Him, Him who Ioves us so much!" (3)

"If you could imagine how painful it has been for me not to have been able to be in communication with you and not to have answered your letters as I would have wished... But I have asked the Divine Father to cure me IN THE NAME OF JESUS, and I am therefore sure He will grant me this grace." (4)  

"Jesus wishes me to abandon myself in His hands, in full trust. And I firmly believe that He has forgiven me as only He knows how; and that He loves me with infinite mercy. How can I not trust without limits?" (5)


"Oh, Jesus, you have not been able to defend yourself against love!... And you have loved me to the point of dying for me on a cross. Oh, Jesus, I want to give my blood and my life to you who gave your blood and life for me!" (6)  


"The union with Jesus to go to the Father, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, is the center of all our spiritual life." (7)  

"Above all and before all, union with Jesus. This is the only way to go to the Father. He said it: I AM THE WAY, NO ONE GOES TO THE FATHER EXCEPT THROUGH ME. [This letter is interrupted here and he adds only): I can write no more because of ill health... but I am getting better." (8)


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." (9)


"Let us make an effort to pray more so as to be more united to Jesus, because this is the only way to gain thousands of souls for God. We have to be other Jesus and this is our foremost wish.” (10)  

"To see with the eyes of Jesus and that Jesus see through ours. To speak as Jesus spoke, and that it be Jesus who speaks through our lips. To love as Jesus loved and that Jesus love with our heart. To live like Jesus, and that Jesus be our life."  

"What a beautiful plan! But this assumes a great intimacy with Jesus, a special union of hearts, a total trust, a living faith in which everything is forgiven and forgotten, and that we live with Jesus in a true atmosphere of love." "Meditate on each of these thoughts, because they are a source of holiness. This plan alone would be sufficient to destroy all our imperfections." (11) 

"In all your actions see only Jesus, and despise the opinions of others. See everything through the eyes of Jesus. This is what St. Paul says: 'I no longer live, but it is Christ who lives in me.' (Gal. 2:19). (12) 


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

"Keep in mind, one and all, that you came to the Congregation to be transformed into Jesus Christ, and to be, insofar as it is possible to each one, another Jesus: 'Those He elected, He also predestined to reproduce the image of His Son.'" (Rom. 8:29) (13)   

"Each one in his ministry will have to be ANOTHER JESUS. This is the condition to save your souls: to become transformed into the only Savior. So the spiritual life is simple, it consists only of our progressive transformation into Jesus, and knowing the means that will help us to achieve this." (14)


"I have prayed much to the Incarnate Word to bless us all, and to grant each of us not only to live united to Him, but to become truly transformed into Him. Ah, if we would understand that this is the whole of our poor and most precious life!..." (15)


"The great task which Jesus has entrusted to each of us, is our transformation into Him."  

"And let us not say, my beloved children, that it is difficult, that it is impossible. No, Jesus does not demand of us things that are impossible."  

"This transformation, so desired by Jesus, and so precious for us, has already begun. Jesus Himself explains it in the parable of the leaven which a woman mixes with three measures of flour. The flour is us. The Church, which gives us Jesus in Baptism, is the woman. Jesus is the leaven which will transform us. And in time it will leaven everything, and it will become a bread worthy of the table of the Heavenly Father. We only need to correspond to this grace to become more and more like that Jesus who is our only ideal, all our hope and all our love." (16)


"I would like the Heavenly Father to find His pleasure in each of you, because He sees that every day you resemble more and more His beloved Son in whom He is well pleased. This is what the Holy Spirit tells us through St. Paul: 'Be clothed with Our Lord Jesus Christ.'" (Rom.13:14). (17)


He 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 inscription: 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." (18) 


"Be concerned with doing the holy will of God, in such a way that this divine will be your food, as it was the food of Jesus." "What perfection is to be found in the practice of this objective! The end of the spiritual life is union with God, but union with God is nothing else than the union of our will with the Divine will. That was the essence of the example of Jesus: 'My food is to do the will of Him who sent me.' (Jn. 4:34). 'I have come from heaven, not to do my will, but the will of Him who sent me.' (Jn. 6:38). 'He who sent me is with me and does not leave me, because I always do what pleases Him.'" (Jn. 7:29)


"This is how we become transformed into Jesus, doing every day the will of the Father, who created our will to unite it to His will." "Oh, beloved Jesus, your food will be our food, your life will be our life; we promise you that with the help of your grace we will follow you from the manger of Bethlehem to the Cross of Calvary." (19)


"Jesus wishes everyone to know that love for his divine Father is what made Him faithful to His will. 'So that the world may know that I love the Father and I do what the Father has commanded, arise and let us go.'" (Jn. 14:31)


And what were the characteristics of Jesus' love for His Father? We can list the following nine:


1. His love was radical: "I came from heaven, not to do my will, but that of my Father." (Jn. 6:38).
2. It was obedient: "I have kept the commands that my Father gave me." (Jn. 15:10).
3. He denied Himself: "I do not seek to do my will, but the will of Him who sent me." (Jn. 6:38).

4. It was a gentle love: "I always do what pleases my Father." (Jn. 8:23)
5. It was a tender love: "I remain in His love." (Jn.15:10).
6. It was a love of union: "My Father is in me, and I in Him." (Jn. 10:38)
7. It was a most faithful love: "Father, I have glorified you on earth, and I have accomplished the work you wanted me to do." (Jn. 7:14).
8. A love capable of any sacrifice: "The Father loves me because I give up my life." (Jn. 10:17).
9. A filial love, a love of surrender: "Father, into your hands, I commend my spirit" (Lk. 23:46).


"The union of infinite love which unites the Father and the Son from all eternity continues to be the same after the Incarnation, when the Son came to earth to fulfill the mission He received from the Father. Just imagine how great and how perfect our love and our surrender to the Father have to be, for us to be able to say that we are a copy of Jesus. But it is the same Father who sends us also, so forward and upward to the holy mountain, to Tabor, to Calvary, to eternal glory!..."


"What a wonderful life plan! To give glory to the Divine Father always imitating Jesus, like him, doing His Father's will!" (20)


"May you be a living copy of Jesus: obedient, meek, humble, loving the hidden life of Nazareth; and also a true apostle, like Jesus: in the highlands, on the sea, in the city, among crowds, among the sick, with the children, with the poor, with everybody... And with Jesus to Mount Tabor, and with Jesus to Calvary, so as to be able to rise with Him from there to eternal glory." (21)


The following was his explanation lo the novices on retreat, of the meaning of transformation into Christ:


"The novice who wants to be like Jesus makes an effort to be obedient and docile, humble and modest, poor and detached from everything, pure and without a stain of sin, compassionate and generous, devout and quiet; Jesus was like that. And furthermore, He was repentant and mortified, prudent and discreet, orderly, self-sacrificing, with an intense spiritual life, always with God. And He loved all to the point of giving His life on the cross lo save us."


"If a novice should make a good will effort to be like Jesus, then Jesus Himself will accept him as a disciple and will sanctify him, will make him happy, will make him apostle, will keep him in His heart, will love him as His own, will bless him when he awakens and will guide him all day, will watch over him always, will keep him from harm and will be with him at his death." (22)  

"Among us there is but one teacher: JESUS. And we all work enthusiastically to follow in His footsteps: Thinking like Jesus, speaking like Jesus, seeing things and people from the point of view of Jesus."

"Oh, most beloved Jesus, this is what we promise you with all our soul: we will be like you, honest, humble and good to all! We will be good with the priests whom you love with a preferential love; good with those who love us and good with those who persecute us as they persecuted you; good with the good souls, and good with the poor sinners... Yes, with your grace, we will know how to sacrifice ourselves for all and to see each of our brothers with deep affection... the way you did." (23)

"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 unto death, martyr to his apostolate until he receives the crown. This it is to be a copy of Jesus." (24)  



"May we love Jesus passionately! This is my constant prayer. This is what I ask for me and for each one of you."(25)


"Love Jesus with all your heart, love Him without measure. He is your support, your Light, your Life, your Spouse, your All." (26)


"Jesus loves you, my daughter, as only He knows how. How do you love Him? Truly without limit? Pray as much as you can during the day, go to visit Jesus and thank Him a thousand times for everything He has done for you; return to Him love for love. Be faithful to Jesus! and be happy in his love." (27) 


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


"We live each day in the love of Jesus. The gaze of the resurrected Jesus is one of infinite and incomparable love for each one of us. 'He lives always to intercede for us before the Father' (Heb. 7:25), and obtains for us more and more favors, more and more forgiveness, more and more mercy."


"In the midst of the bright, arid periods of faith, my beloved sons, always bear in mind, at all times, that Jesus is looking at you, and that gaze is of pure love, and envelops each of our souls in His very Soul."


"May the same Jesus, who is all our hope, grant us the only thing we wish: to be His, even to the smallest vibration of our spirit." "May Jesus keep us all in His love and in that of his Divine Father, and in that of the Holy Spirit, who together are one God." (28) 


"I have just started my retreat two days ago, and I already see myself as a leper. I have the clear vision of a soul full of miseries: it is mine! This is very painful and very good. Ask together with me for a radical change in my life, a complete conversion."


"The goodness of Jesus towards me is so great, so incomprehensible... And my ingratitude so black, everywhere I turn..."


"But I have complete confidence, because His mercy is infinite for those who love him, and, despite all, I truly love Him." (29)  


This chapter would never end if I were to reproduce here everything that Father Félix wrote about the love of Christ in his letters and talks.  

I only wish to add a very clear aspect of love for Jesus in the spirituality of our founder, and that is his devotion to Jesus Christ present in the Eucharist. It is true that Christ, as God, is present everywhere, but the man, the son of Mary, He who was called Jesus, He who lived on earth and died for us is only present in the splendor of His glory and in the consecrated hosts. Father Félix was always impressed with the physical presence of the humanity of Christ in our tabernacles. And he made explicit his love and gratitude towards Jesus dedicating many hours of his life, day and night, to the adoration of Christ hidden in the Eucharistic bread.


Very frequently he talked to the novices about "being with Jesus before the tabernacle," of "adoring Jesus present in the consecrated host," of "keeping Jesus company when He is left alone in the churches," of "visiting Jesus many times a day," of "comforting Jesus and making up for so much forgetfulness, so much indifference, for so many sins…"  

We will therefore end this chapter with some paragraphs in which Father Félix talks to us about love for Jesus in the Sacrament of the Eucharist:

"The Eucharist is the supreme manifestation of the love of Jesus, not only for His Church, but also for each of us. The Council of Trent declared that: 'Our Savior, before leaving this world to return to His Father, instituted the Sacrament of the Eucharist in which He poured out the riches of His divine love towards mankind.'" (S. 13. C.2)

"If we consider in the Eucharist the three dimensions of love which St. Paul admires in the Incarnation (Eph. 3:18), we will see that they are also present in this admirable Sacrament: there is no limit to the depth, because it is the infinite which gives itself to us. There is no limit to the breadth, either, because it is given to all without exception. Neither is there a limit in time, because it is given at every instant until the end of time."

"Although the Lord should confide to us numerous ministries, the center of our life is the Eucharist. Our soul does not leave this center, where it finds new strength for its apostolate."

"More Tabernacle, my sons, more Tabernacle every day!" (30)

"Our spirituality is one of love for the Eucharistic 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." (31)  

"Christ remains present in each consecrated host, and there he renews His priestly oblation and invites us to an intimate and personal union with Him. That is why the prayer before the Most Blessed Sacrament is our characteristic way of praying and demands of us special fidelity. This is how we unite ourselves to Christ in His constant glorification of the Father and in His intercession for mankind." (32)

"Every day we will offer the Lord an hour of prayer before Jesus, present in the Sacrament of the Eucharist.

"As a practice which conforms to our spirit and mission, we also recommend dedicating time during the night for adoration of Jesus in the Eucharist, even when this would require a special effort." (33)  

“I know live a life that is a bit different, with these pains that have nailed me to the feet of Our Lord. I do nothing but tell him that I wish His will be done. I understand that these days of pain are days of grace. And although I am so sick, what consolation it is to be able to spend long hours at the feet of Jesus in our chapel.” (34) 


1.   Talk to the novices. September 14. 1932.
2.   To the Daughters of the Holy Spirit, March 3, 1929
3.   Notes. September 2, 1929.

4.   Letter to the students in Rome. August 1, 1930.

5.   Notes. April 17,1924.

6.   Notes. November 14, 1921.
7.   To the students in Rome. January 13, 1932.
8.   Ibid. October 25,1931.

9.   Talk to the students, January 7, 1929.
10. To the students in Rome. June 20, 1931.
11. Ibid., April 13,1929.
12. To a religious man, September 20, 1928.
13. Draft of the 1929 Constitutions.
14. Talk to the Novices, February 9,1930.
15. Ibid. 
16. To the students in Rome.
17. Talk to students, January 17, 1932.
18. December 25,1932.
19. Commentary to the constitutions, April 15, 1934.
20. Letter to a priest, March 20,1934
21. Letter to Fr. José M. Gonzalez, March 19, 1919.
22. Talk to the novices, September 6, 1918.
23. Letter to the students in Rome, undated.
24. To a missionary, December 3, 1923.
25. To Father V. Méndez, December 17, 1923.
26. To a religious woman, June 22,1924.
27. To a religious woman, December 6, 1928.
28. To the students in Rome, May 5, 1930.
29. Retreat, November 4, 1925.
30. Retreat, April 22, 1934. 
31. Letter to Rome, undated.
32. Constitutions No. 48.
33. Ibid. No. 96.
34. To the students in Rome, April 29, 1934.  

    PreviousINDEX | Next


 © 2008, missionaries of the Holy Spirit. All rights reserved.