Benson Theological Center
The Gayle and Tom Benson Theological Center (BTC) is the main administrative building on Oblate’s campus and is centrally located between the Whitely Theological Center and the Immaculate Conception Memorial Chapel. The BTC houses the School’s business offices, classrooms and a large lecture hall. Visitors of Oblate are greeted by a bronze sculpture of OMI Founder St. Eugene de Mazenod upon arrival.
St. Eugene de Mazenod, founder of OMI, saw the state of the Church and of the people and chose to work with the poor and the most abandoned, to preach missions and to organize a youth association. He desired to “lead people to act like human beings first of all and then like Christians and finally…saints.” The task was so vast that he gathered other priests to join him an in 1816 started the “Missionaries of Provence.” Within 10 years, the group developed into the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate. The saint’s mission has extended to France and nearly 70 countries about the world with more than 4,000 Oblates carrying forward the missionary vision of St. Eugene.