Robert Maloney traces the friendship of Vincent de Paul and Jean-Jacques Olier and summarizes some essential similarities and differences between them. Vincent was briefly Olier’s spiritual director and helped him persevere in his vocation. They highly regarded one another and collaborated. However, Olier was “one of the purest examples” of the French school of spirituality; Vincent was not of that school, although it influenced him. Both were Christocentric, but Vincent saw Christ in poor persons where Olier focused on the Holy Spirit. Both were concerned with following providence, but for Olier “providence” was interchangeable with “the Spirit” and it was not for Vincent. Their approach to prayer had some commonalities, although Vincent was more interested in results while Olier was contemplative. Finally, there were some key differences in their Marian devotion and their positions on vows.
Maloney, Robert P. C.M.
"Vincent de Paul and Jean-Jacques Olier: Unlikely Friends,"
Vincentian Heritage Journal: Vol. 28
, Article 1.
Available at: http://via.library.depaul.edu/vhj/vol28/iss1/1