From the Foreword:
lt gives me great pleasure to introduce this new biography of Frederic Ozanam by one who is so steeped in the life and apostolate of the founder of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul. In commending this book, I thank Dr. Austin Fagan for bis profound understanding of Frederic, and for putting before the brothers and sisters in the Society this model of the ideal Catholic layman-a man of bis time and a man of great vision.
This is a period in the history of the Church in which we have great need of models who show us that in a complex and often perplexing society, it is still possible to live simple lives, gospel lives, and thus demonstrate the unchanging spiritual and moral values to which we must hold with perseverance and tenacity, each as we follow our own unique vocation in today’s world-our world.
This new book, sponsored jointly by the National Councils of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul of England & Wales and of Scotland, is surely a timely reminder to us ali of the life and work of one who fulfilled so well the role of the ideal Catholic layrnan.
May it be a source of inspiration to us ali as we travel our pilgrim way-as Ozanam travelled-and this is our lot in any era of history. May the Church soon be inspired officially to recognise Frederic’s holiness and number him amongst the blessed in heaven.
National Spiritual Director, Scotland.