St John Eudes (1601-1680) is the founder of the Sisters of Our Lady of Charity of the Refuge, the Congregation of sisters that St. Mary Euphrasia joined as a young woman.
On June 27th, 2014 the Congregations of Our Lady of Charity of the Refuge and the Sisters of the Good Shepherd reunited as one. Members of the Congregation of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd celebrate this inspirational man and his rich legacy, particularly on his Feast day.
St John Eudes wrote: 'Love of God and love of neighbor are inseparable; we must love our neighbour with the same heart and the same love which we have for God, or rather, it is God we must love in our neighbour.'
Here is one of his beautiful reflections, particularly relevant to us as Good Shepherds:
What is the duty of a Shepherd?
to strengthen what is weak,
to bind up what is broken,
to bring back what was driven away,
to preserve what is well and strong.
A true shepherd should be a burning and shining light
burning interiorly and shining exteriorly,
a light to others in action.
To shine only exteriorly is vanity.
To burn solely within is something,
but it is not enough for a shepherd of souls.
To be shining and burning is holiness.