May 30

“The other group that most claimed my attention was the clergy. If all those studying for service in the Church were men of genuine vocation, virtue, and studiousness, what good priests we’d have and how many converts we’d make!” (Aut 326)

MAY SALT NOT LOSE ITS TASTE

Nobody who has passed through the life of the Christian community doubts the need for the ordained ministry, in order to shepherd the faithful which belong to it. The figure of the priest is key to the spiritual path of each community. The Second Vatican Council has helped, however, to declericalise the image of the Church and to deepen the vocation of the laity. (more…)

May 29

“In the case of children, the only work required is that of planting, whereas adults require both weeding and planting. There is yet another advantage: grownups are often won over by the little ones, and parents are won over by their children because children are like so many pieces of their parents’ hearts. When the children receive a little holy card as a prize for their attendance and diligence [at catechism], their parents and other adults read them at home out of curiosity, and this often results in their conversion, as I know from experience.”

(Aut 275).

EVANGELICAL INGENUITY

The most widespread opinion in the field (more…)

May 28

…events will succeed. You already know that I never get involved in politics, but not infrequently politics gets involved with men and it would not be strange if politics got involved with me and I had to absent myself from His Majesty’s side and even from Spain.”

(Carta a D. Manuel Miura, 19.7.65, en EC II, p. 910s).

GOD LOVES THE WORLD

Neither Claret not anyone else has been able to choose the era in which they would liked to have lived. Neither could he control the social and ecclesial crises unleashed by the politics of the 19th Century. Neither in recent years have we been able to avoid the crises which, (more…)

May 27

“…yesterday when I went (to the church), I beheld that those who were in front of the Church, attending mass, when they saw me they left, shouting slanders and insults directed at my person. Not all left…. Pray that I, wanting to imitate Jesus Christ who threw the undevout out of the temple courtyard, may suffer some disgrace. I make you a participant in remedying so much evil. For then you may see me go to another parish so as not to be here continually fighting with these and others on which prudence commands me to be silent.”

(Carta al alcalde de Sallent, 2 de mayo de 1836, en EC I, p.77).

THE MISSIONARY IS PATIENT (more…)

May 26

“I will say these prayers of aspiration: Ah my Jesus! As the water is joined with the wine in the holy sacrifice of the Mass, so I long to be joined with You and offer myself in sacrifice to the Most Blessed Trinity. Ah my Jesus! What would you have me do for love of you? I desire nothing but to know your will so that I may fulfil it, cost what it may.”(Resolutions 1857 Made of Holy Retreat in the Year 1857, 10th July, 3).

ABSOLUTE SELF-GIVING

Prayers of aspiration are brief forms of prayer with which, since ancient times, believers have directed themselves to God in different circumstances. (more…)

May 25

“When a man is faithful to his vocation and corresponds with great force of will, he can do very much. And if he is persevering and does not allow himself to slacken in what he has begun, he can do things beyond all explaining – always, however, with the help of God’s grace. Happy the man who is faithful…, who does not presume to rely on himself, but puts all his trust in God; who attributes nothing to himself and all to God; who says nothing of himself either in praise or in blame, but remains silent; who thinks that all he does is done of God, through God and for God.” (Notes concerning the First Vatican Council, 2B.).

WHAT DOES FIDELITY MEAN?

(more…)

May 24

“God asked forgiveness of the eternal Father for those who crucified him. And he teaches us how we must forgive and love our enemies.” (Reloj de la pasión, en EE p. 199).

WIDENESS OF HEART

It is not easy to forgive those who have offended against us; the tendency to revenge or rancour appears innate. But Jesus went around forgiving freely and asked forgiveness for his executioners from the cross. His heart was wide: he lived out his instruction to forgive enemies (cf. Mt 5:44). Love for enemies was, for Him, the way to be children of God, to be ‘like’ the Father. (more…)

May 23

“How important it is nowadays to circulate good books to counteract the flood of bad ones!” (Aut 708).

VEHICLES FOR GOOD

One day my grandfather found me seated in front of the computer. Seeing me so engrossed and for such a long time he came up to me and said, “I have heard that that through this apparatus much evil is received and done.” I answered him, “It’s the new machine for writing. And also you can use it to find the information you need.” My grandfather did not delay in asking me for some fact. When I gave it to him, he opened his eyes and thanked me. But he left me thinking about what he had said: (more…)

May 22

“My only goal and all my anxieties were about manufacturing. I can’t overstate it – my obsession approached delirium. Who can say? Perhaps the very intensity of my inclination was the means God used to take away my love for manufacturing.” (Aut 67)

GOD WRITES STRAIGHT…

You do not know the ways of God not the means by which his love, his call will reach you. You do not know the course of your life, in all its breadth, depth and truth, beforehand. It is, to use a simile, like a suspense thriller…only at the end is the suspense and complexity of the plot unveiled. So yes, God keeps being mysterious, as also is (and always will be) the loving (more…)

May 21

“Ever since I was a small boy I have been attracted to piety and religion.” (Aut 36).

EVERY GREAT JOURNEY BEGINS WITH A FIRST STEP

There are terms which have fallen into disuse. Practically nobody says them. Our mentality, supposedly more adult, cultured, useful, rational, technical, ‘cold’… does not know what to do or how  to react to certain words. It seems that piety has to be seen with sentiment, emotion, feelings. And it seems that it is some sort of sentimental inclination towards a particular reality. At least in certain contexts it is synonymous with devotion, that is, love, reverence and respect for a reality, whatever that may be. (more…)