THE CHILDREN OF MARELLO IN THE CHURCH
The Congregation of the Oblates of St. Joseph (CongregatioOblatorumSanctiIoseph in Latín, OSI) was born on March14, 1878, and matured through the prayers and sufferings of Fr. Joseph Marello. He wanted a community of true disciples of Jesus Christ, where the commandment of charity was lived out in a fraternal lifestyle in imitation of the Holy Family and where the members take their inspiration from St. Joseph, the first on earth to serve the interests of Jesus.
ASSISTANCE TO DIOCESAN CLERGY
«The Brothers of St. Joseph, as they have always enjoyed the favor of the bishop, seek to do all that is possible in order not to lose it, remaining faithful to the spirit of their Institute which requires them to never remove themselves from any work of the sacred ministry to which they are called by ecclesiastical Authority ». J. Marello, Note on the state of the Congregation of the Oblates of St. Joseph (1895)
MINISTRY OF SOCIAL ASSISTANCE
On October 6, 1882, a meritorious man from Asti, Giovanni Cerrato, passes over to Marello the responsiblity for a rest home for the “chronically ill” poor people, founded by him years before in the city. So, two years later, Marello transferred the patients in to more suitable quarters in the former cloistered convent of St. Clares .
In 1895, the Brothers took over care of the first city oratory in Asti, the oratory of St. John at the Cathedral. From that time the Oblates of St. Joseph walk along the ways of God and the directives outlined by their founder.
SCHOOLS AND STUDENT RESIDENCES
In the meantime, Marello’s small religious families grew and,in 1884, there are two priests and twenty-two among brothers and novices. This allows them to open in the former convent of Santa Chiara a school, a student residence for about thirty of the students and an orphanage for poor children.
The Oblates are open to the indications coming from Providence when they are called to lands where the need for evangelization is most evident. The sons of Marello presently are in Italy, Philippines, Brazil, United States, Peru, Bolivia, India, Poland, Nigeria and more recently in Spain, Australia, Mozambique, El Salvador, Indonesia and Germany.
The Congregation founded by Fr. Marello is made up of Brothers and Priests. The religious Brothers are consecrated to following Jesus, dedicated to the Josephite ideal of the Congregation, and able to have a profound relationship with the Lord. They dedicate themselves to the works of the apostolate proper to the Oblates (schools, parishes, youth activities and catechesis), or also in administering and taking care of the patrimony of the Institute, according to the abilities and dispositions of each one, either in their own land or in the missions.
The priests are disciples of Jesus dedicated to the pastoral ministry in accordance with the spirit of the Institute: working in parishes, assisting diocesan priests for preaching, catechesis and liturgical celebrations, in the missions, ecc. Almost all of their pastoral activity is connected to youth ministry: a priviledged area is that of the Christian education of youth in oratories and schools.
The laity take part in the charism of Marello from whose spiritual treasure anyone can draw who wishes to serve the Lord in imitation of St. Joseph. For them the forms of ministry manifest themselves in “that which Providence points out from day to day”, in attention to the most needy, the last and youth, always in reading the signs of the times alongside the Oblate Fathers and Brothers.
Called to share in the spirituality of the Founder, the Oblates Sisters of St. Joseph care for youth by way of catechesis, school activities, oratories and welcoming centers. The first community was begun in Brazil, in 1992, and was followed by those in the Philippines, Peru, Italy and Nigeria.
The vocation to the religious and priestly life requires a daily response. The seminary offers a formation program based on the teachings of the Church Magisterium and a environment favorable to growth in the spiritual life such that the young man might be ready to follow Jesus and be generous in serving Him.
HOUSES OF WELCOME
In order to meet the educational demands for the spiritual and cultural formation of youth, there arose Oblate communities of welcome. These are tools for vocation ministry within the world of youth in the parishes, with moments of prayer, community life and human maturity.
THE SPIRITUAL CHILDREN OF MARELLO
The Oblates of St. Joseph have always been committed to guard and transmit the characteristics proper to their Charism such as intimacy with God, education of the heart, devotion to Our Lady and St. Joseph, patience and gentleness, spiritual fatherhood, hardwork, fidelity to the Church and the Pope, and the zeal for making Jesus Christ present to others.