December 21, 2007

On The Beatitudes...

"Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."

"Poor in spirit" means to be humble. Humility is the realization that all your gifts and blessings come from the grace of God. To have poverty of spirit means to be completely empty and open to the Word of God. When we are an empty cup and devoid of pride, we are humble. Humility brings an openness and an inner peace, allowing one to do the will of God. He who humbles himself is able to accept our frail nature, to repent, and to allow the grace of God to lead us to Conversion.
It is pride, the opposite of humility, that brings misery. For pride brings anger and the seeking of revenge, especially when one is offended. If every man were humble and poor in spirit, there would be no war!

"Blessed are they who mourn, for they shall be comforted."

If we are humble and appreciate that all of our gifts and blessings come from God, we grow in love and gratitude for Jesus Christ our Savior. But this can only produce mourning and regret over our own sins and the sins of this world, for we have hurt the one who has been so good to us. One also mourns for the suffering of others.
St. Gregory describes another reason to mourn: the more one ascends in meditation of Divine Truth, Beauty, and Goodness, and then realize the poverty of human nature, man can only be left in sorrow. When one contemplates that we were made in the image and likeness of God and lived in Paradise, the Garden of Eden, and compare that to our present state after the Fall, one can only mourn our present condition. But the sentence continues that they shall be comforted, by the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, and hopefully one day in the Kingdom of Heaven.
Mourning in this context is called a blessing, because mourning our fallen nature creates in us a desire to improve ourselves and to do what is right!
"Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth."

St. Gregory of Nyssa taught that the Beatitudes build one upon another. A humble person becomes meek, or becomes gentle and kind, and exhibits a docility of spirit, even in the face of adversity and hardship. A person that is meek is one that exhibits self-control. St. Augustine advises us to be meek in the face of the Lord, and not resist but be obedient to him. Obedience and submission to the will of God are certainly not in vogue these days, but they will bring one peace in this world and in the next.

"Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied."

A continuous desire for justice and moral perfection will lead one to a fulfillment of that desire - a transition and conversion to holiness. This is true for all the virtues - if you hunger and thirst for temperance, you will head towards the goal you have in mind. St. Augustine, in his discourse on the Lord's Sermon on the Mount, notes the correspondence of the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit and their necessity in fulfilling the Beatitudes. For example, one must have the gift of fortitude so one may be courageous in seeking justice.
"Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy."

Mercy is the loving disposition towards those who suffer distress. Love, compassion, and forgiveness towards one's neighbor will bring peace in your relationships. We say in the Lord's Prayer: Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. As we are merciful to others, so our Heavenly Father will be merciful with us! Jesus reminds us that whatever "you did to the least of my brethren, you did it to me (Matthew 25:31-46)." St. Paul calls for the obedience of faith in the beginning and end of his Letter to the Romans (1:5, 16:25-27). The following are ways to be merciful to your neighbor, as well as obedient in faith to Christ our Savior.

The Corporal Works of Mercy
1 Feed the Hungry
2 Give drink to the thirsty
3 Clothe the naked
4 Shelter the homeless
5 Comfort the imprisoned
6 Visit the sick
7 Bury the dead

The Spiritual Works of Mercy
1 Admonish sinners
2 Instruct the uninformed
3 Counsel the doubtful
4 Comfort the sorrowful
5 Be patient with those in error
6 Forgive offenses
7 Pray for the living and the dead

"Blessed are the pure of heart, for they shall see God."

Moses (Exodus 33:20), John (1:18), and Paul (1Timothy 6:16) all say that no one can see God here on earth! But Jesus says the pure of heart shall see God! To be pure of heart means to be free of all selfish intentions and self-seeking desires. What a beautiful goal! How many times have any of us performed an act perfectly free of any personal gain? Such an act is pure love. An act of pure and selfless giving brings happiness to all.

"Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called children of God."

Peacemakers not only live peaceful lives but also try to bring peace and friendship to others, and to preserve peace between God and man. St. Gregory of Nyssa calls a peacemaker a man who brings peace to another; but one cannot give another what one does not possess oneself. Hence the Lord wants you first to be yourself filled with the blessings of peace and then to communicate it to those who have need of it. By imitating God's love of man, the peacemakers become children of God.

"Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven."

Jesus said many times that those who follow Him will be persecuted. "If they persecute me, they will persecute you" (John 15:20-21). Stephen, Peter and Paul, nearly all of the Apostles, and many Christians in the Roman era suffered martyrdom. The twentieth century with its two World Wars and endless regional conflicts has seen its share of martyrs such as Maximilian Kolbe, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and the Central American martyrs. But the Lord promised those that suffer for his sake will be rewarded with the Kingdom of Heaven!

The Bible


1 The Navarre RSV Holy Bible. Four Courts Press, Dublin, Ireland, 2001-2005.

2 St. Gregory of Nyssa. The Lord's Prayer and The Beatitudes. Ancient Christian Writers, Paulist Press, Mahwah, New Jersey.

3 St. Augustine. The Lord's Sermon on the Mount. Ancient Christian Writers, Paulist Press, Mahwah, New Jersey.

4 Pope John Paul II. The Splendor of Truth, the encyclical Veritatis Splendor. Pauline Books & Media, Boston, 1993.

5 Pope Benedict XVl. Jesus of Nazareth. Doubleday, New York, 2007.

6 Brown RE, Fitzmeyer JA, Murphy RE (eds): The New Jerome Biblical Commentary. Prentice Hall, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, 1990.

7 Spielvogel JJ. Western Civilization, Sixth Edition, Thomson Wadsworth, Belmont, California, 2006.

October 15, 2007

Litany to St. Teresa of Jesus (Avila)

Let nothing trouble you, let nothing make you afraid. All things pass away. God never changes. Patience obtains everything. God alone is enough.... Saint Teresa of Avila
Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, have mercy on us.

Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.

God the Father of Heaven,
Have mercy on us.

God the Son, Redeemer Of the world,
Have mercy on us.

God the Holy Spirit,
Have mercy on us.

Holy Trinity, One God,
Have mercy on us.

Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Pray for us.

Holy Mary, Our Lady of Mount Carmel,
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, whose heart was transverberated by the love of God,
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, most humble servant of God,
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, most zealous for the glory of God,
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, truly detached from all created objects,
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, great light of the Catholic Church,
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, reformer and glory of the Carmelite Order,
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, queen of mystical theology,
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, lustrous name of Avila and Spain,
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, who didst forever glorify the name of Teresa,
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, wishing to suffer or to die,
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, exclaiming, "O Lord, how sweet and pleasing are Thy ways!"
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, desiring so much the salvation of souls,
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, tasting and seeing how sweet is the Lord,
even in this vale of miseries,
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, exclaiming,
"O death, who can fear thee who art the way to true life!"
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, true lover of the Cross of Christ,
Pray for us.

St. Teresa, who didst live to love,
who died to love, and who wilt love eternally,
Pray for us.

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Spare us, O Lord.

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Graciously hear us, O Lord.

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Have mercy on us.
V. Pray for us, O holy Saint Teresa,
R.That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
Let Us Pray
O God, Who didst replenish the heart of Thy blessed servant St. Teresa with the treasures of Thy divine love, grant that, like her, we may love Thee and suffer all things for Thee and in union with Thee, that we may gain souls for Thee, and that we may secure the salvation of our own soul. This we beg though the merits of our Savior and the intercession of Thy glorious virgin Teresa.
R. Amen.

August 25, 2007

Prayer from: Sr. Mariam of Jesus Crucified

Holy Spirit; Inspire me.

Love of God; Consume me.
Along the true road,
Lead me.
Mary, my Good Mother,
Look down upon me.
With Jesus, Bless me.
From all Evil,
All Illusion,
All Danger,
Preserve me.

July 16, 2007

Flos Carmeli

O beautiful flower of Carmel,

most fruitful vine,

splendor of heaven,

holy and singular,

who brought forth the Son of God,

still ever remaining a pure Virgin,

assist us in this necessity.

(Pause & Quietly mention your petitions)

O Star Of The Sea, help us, and protect us!

Show me that thou art my Mother.

O Mary conceived without sin,

pray for us who have recourse to thee.

Mother and Ornament of Carmel, pray for us.
Patroness of all who wear the Scapular, pray for us.

Help of all who die wearing the Scapular, pray for us.

St. Joseph, friend of the Sacred Heart, pray for us.

St. Joseph, chaste spouse of Mary, pray for us.

St. Joseph our patron,

pray for us.

O sweet heart of Mary,

be our salvation.


May 11, 2007

Holy God, We Praise Thy Name

1.   Holy God, we praise thy name;
      Lord of all, we bow before thee;
      all on earth thy scepter claim;
      all in heaven above adore thee.
      //Infinite thy vast domain;
      everlasting is thy reign.\\

2.   Hark the glad celestial hymn
      angel choirs above are raising;
      cherubim and seraphim,
      in unceasing chorus praising,
      //Fill the heavens with sweet accord:
      Holy, holy, holy Lord.\\

3.   Lo! the apostolic train
      joins thy sacred name to hallow;
      prophets swell the glad refrain,
      and the white-robed martyrs follow.
      //And from morn to set of sun,
      through the church the song goes on.\\

4.   Holy Father, Holy Son,
      Holy Spirit: three we name thee,
      though in essence only one;
      undivided God we claim thee,
      //and adoring bend the knee
      while we own the mystery.\\

//Repeat a second time\\
Text: Sts. 1-4, Ignaz Franz, Trans. by Clarence Walworth; Sts. 5-7, F. Bland Tucker
Music: Katholisches Gesanbuch, Vienna, c. 1774
Tune: GROSSER GOTT, Meter: 78.78.77

May 10, 2007


Blessed be God.
Blessed be His Holy Name.
Blessed be Jesus Christ, true God and true man.
Blessed be the Name of Jesus.
Blessed be His Most Sacred Heart.
Blessed be His Most Precious Blood.
Blessed be Jesus in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar.
Blessed be the Holy Spirit, the Paraclete.
Blessed be the great Mother of God, Mary most holy.
Blessed be her holy and Immaculate Conception.
Blessed be her glorious Assumption.
Blessed be the name of Mary, Virgin and Mother.
Blessed be St. Joseph, her most chaste spouse.
Blessed be God in His angels and in His Saints.

ALL: May the heart of Jesus, in the Most Blessed Sacrament, be praised, adored, and loved with grateful affection, at every moment, in all the tabernacles of the world, even to the end of time. Amen.
The Divine Praises are acclamations, which traditionally conclude Benediction. Although the present official rite makes their use optional during the reposition of the sacrament, the Divine Praises are still generally recited or sung immediately following the blessing with the Host. The recitation sometimes takes the form of a litany, recited by the priest and repeated by the people, or priest and people recite the Praises together.
The original form is attributed to the eighteenth-century Jesuit Luigi Felici, who promoted them as reparation for public blasphemy. The litany has been added to over the years and indulgenced by the Holy See until assuming their present form.

May 9, 2007

Tantum Ergo...

Priest: Panem de coelo praestitisti eis.
People: Omne delectamentum in se habentem.

To hear the Chant, go to:

May 8, 2007

Closing Prayer to the Blessed Sacrament

As this time of Adoration closes, O Jesus, * I renew my faith and trust in Thee. * I am refreshed after these moments with Thee, * and I count myself among a privileged number, * even as Thy disciples were, * who shared Thy actual presence. *
Realizing that my visit to Thee is of little avail unless I try to live a better life and set a better example, * I am resolved to go forth again to my duties and my concerns * with a renewed spirit of perseverance and good will. * In my daily life I will try to love and serve God well, * and love my neighbor also, * for these two things go together. * I will try to be a true disciple, indeed. * Help me. O Jesus, * in this my resolution. *
Bless me, dear Lord, before I go. * And bless not me alone, O Lord, * but all as well who are here present, * and all who could not come, *especially the sick and the dying. * Bless our homes and all the children there. * Bless all our life and the hour of our death. *
Grant rest to the souls of the faithful departed, * and bring them into the light of Thy divine glory. * So may we who have worshiped Thee * and been blessed by Thee here on earth, * come to behold the radiant glory * of Thy unveiled countenance in heaven for ever and ever. * Amen. *

Say three times:
Sacred Heart of Jesus, * Thy Kingdom come!
300 days Indulgence.

Follow with:
1 Our Father - 1 Hail Mary - 1 Glory Be.
(For the intentions of the Holy Father and to gain the indulgences for this Holy Hour.)

Close with:
O Sacrament most holy * O Sacrament divine! *All praise and all thanksgiving * be every moment Thine!
300 days Indulgence.

Opening Prayer to the Blessed Sacrament

My Lord Jesus Christ, * it is Thy great love for men * that keeps Thee day and night in this Sacrament, * full of pity and love, * expecting, * inviting, * and welcoming all who visit Thee. * I believe Thou art * really present * in the Sacrament of the Altar. * From the depth of my nothingness, * I adore Thee; * and I thank Thee * for the many graces Thou hast given me, * especially * for the gift of Thyself in this Sacrament, * for the gift of Thy most holy Mother as my intercessor, * and for the privilege * of visiting Thee in this Chapel.*
I now speak to Thy most loving Heart * with a three-fold intention: * to thank Thee for the great gift of Thyself; * to atone for all the insults * which Thy enemies heap upon Thee in this Sacrament; * and to adore Thee * wherever Thy Eucharistic Presence * is dishonored or forgotten. * My Jesus, * I love Thee with my whole heart. * I am very sorry for my ingratitude * to Thy infinite goodness. * I now resolve, * with the help of Thy grace, * never to offend Thee again. * And, sinful as I am, * I consecrate to Thee * my entire self, * my whole will, * my affections, * my desires, * and all that I have. * From now on, * do with me and mine * as Thou pleasest. * I ask for and desire only Thy love, * final perseverance, * and the grace always to do Thy holy will. *
I intercede with Thee for the souls in purgatory, * especially for those * who were most devoted to the Blessed Sacrament, * and to Thy most holy Mother. * recommend to Thee also, * all poor sinners. * And lastly, * my dear Savior, * I unite all my desires * with the desires of Thy most loving Heart. * Thus united, * I present them to Thy Eternal Father, * and beg Him in Thy Name * and for love of Thee, * to hear and answer them. *

May 7, 2007


Priest:   God the Father, Creator of Heaven & Earth ...
People:  I LOVE YOU, O MY GOD.
              (same response for all invocations)

God, the Son, Redeemer of the World ...
God, the Holy Spirit ...
Holy Trinity, one God ...
You, who are Infinite Love ...
You, Who did first love me ...
You, Who asks me to love You ...
With all my heart ...
With all my soul ...
With all my mind ...
With all my strength ...
Above all possessions and honors ...
Above all pleasures and enjoyments ...
More than myself ...
More than anything belonging to me ...
More than all my relatives and friends ...
More than all men and angels ...
Above all created things ...
Because You are the Sovereign God ...
Because You are Limitless Love ...
Because You are Infinite Goodness ...
Because You are Unfathomed Devine Mercy ...
Because You are Infinitely Holy ...
Because You are Worthy of all love ...
Even if You had not promised heaven ...
Even if You had not menaced me with hell ...
Even should You try me with want and misfortune ...
In wealth and in poverty ...
In prosperity and adversity ...
In health and in sickness ...
In time and in eternity ...
In union with that love wherewith the Angels in heaven love You ...
In union with that love wherewith the Saints love You ...
In union with that love wherewith the Blessed Virgin Mary loves You ...
In union with that love wherewith You love Yourself eternally ...

May 6, 2007

Father We Adore You...

Father, we adore You
Lay our lives before You...
         How we love You.

Jesus, we adore You
Lay our lives before You...
         How we love You.

Spirit, we adore You
Lay our lives before You...
         How we love You.

May 5, 2007

The Chaplet of the Divine Mercy...

1. Begin with the Sign of the Cross, 1 Our Father, 1 Hail Mary and The Apostles Creed.

Our Father, Who art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy Name. Thy Kingdom come. Thy Will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.

Hail Mary, Full of Grace, The Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now, and at the hour of death. Amen.

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of Heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ, His only Son Our Lord, Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into Hell; the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into Heaven, and sitteth at the right hand of God, the Father almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body and life everlasting. Amen.

2. Then on the Our Father Beads say the following:

Eternal Father, I offer You the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your dearly beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins and those of the whole world.

3. On the 10 Hail Mary Beads say the following:

For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world.

(Repeat step 2 and 3 for all five decades).
4. Conclude with (three times):

Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One,
have mercy on us and on the whole world.

Closing Prayer:

Eternal God, in whom mercy is endless and the treasury of compassion --- inexhaustible, look kindly upon us and increase Your Mercy in us, that in difficult moments we might not despair nor become despondent, but with great confidence submit ourselves to Your Holy Will, which is Love and Mercy itself. - In the name of the Father, Son, & Holy Spirit - Amen.

In 1933, God gave Sister Faustina a striking vision of His Mercy, Sister tells us:

"I saw a great light, with God the Father in the midst of it. Between this light and the earth I saw Jesus nailed to the Cross and in such a way that God, wanting to look upon the earth, had to look through Our Lord's wounds and I understood that God blessed the earth for the sake of Jesus."

Of another vision on Sept. 13, 1935, she writes:

"I saw an Angel, the executor of God's wrath... about to strike the earth...I began to beg God earnestly for the world with words which I heard interiorly. As I prayed in this way, I saw the Angel's helplessness, and he could not carry out the just punishment...."

The following day an inner voice taught her to say this prayer on ordinary rosary beads:

"First say one 'Our Father', 'Hail Mary', and 'I believe'. Then on the large beads say the following words: 'Eternal Father, I offer You the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your dearly beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins and those of the whole world.' On the smaller beads you are to say the following words: 'For the sake of His sorrowful Passion have mercy on us and on the whole world.' In conclusion you are to say these words three times: 'Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world'.

Jesus said later to Sister Faustina:

"Say unceasingly this chaplet that I have taught you. Anyone who says it will receive great Mercy at the hour of death. Priests will recommend it to sinners as the last hope. Even the most hardened sinner, if he recites this Chaplet even once, will receive grace from My Infinite Mercy. I want the whole world to know My Infinite Mercy. I want to give unimaginable graces to those who trust in My Mercy...."

"....When they say this Chaplet in the presence of the dying, I will stand between My Father and the dying person not as the just judge but as the Merciful Savior".

May 4, 2007

hymn: Heart of Jesus

1.                 Heart of Jesus, meek and mild,
               Hear, oh hear, Thy feeble child.
                    In the tempest, most severe
               Heart of Jesus, hear.

Refrain:         Sweetly we rest on Thy Sacred Heart

               Never from Thee, O let us part...

                     Hear then, Thy loving children's prayer.
               Heart of Jesus, Heart of Jesus, hear...

2.                  Make me Truly, wholly Thine.

               Take, O take, this heart of mine.

                     Guide me through this world so drear.
               Heart of Jesus hear.       (refrain)

May 3, 2007



O Sacred Heart of Jesus, * animated with a desire * to repair the outrages unceasingly offered to Thee, * we knell before the Throne of Thy Mercy, * and in the name of all mankind, * pledge our love and fidelity to Thee!

The more Thy mysteries are blasphemed, * the more firmly we shall believe them, * O Sacred Heart of Jesus!

The more impiety endeavors to extinguish our hopes of immortality, *
the more we shall trust in Thy Heart, * sole hope of mankind!

The more hearts resist Thy Divine attractions, * the more we shall love Thee, * O Infinitely Amiable Heart of Jesus!

The more unbelief attacks Thy Divinity, * the more humbly and profoundly we shall adore It, * O Divine Heart of Jesus!

The more Thy holy laws are transgressed and ignored, * the more we shall delight to observe them, * O Most Holy Heart of Jesus!

The more Thy Sacraments are despised and abandoned, * the more frequently we shall receive them with love and reverence, * O Most Liberal Heart of Jesus!

The more the imitation of Thy virtues is neglected and forgotten, * the more we shall endeavor to practice them, * O Heart, Model of every Virtue!

The more the devil labors to destroy souls, * the more we shall be inflamed with desire to save them, * O Heart of Jesus, zealous Lover of souls!

The more sin and impurity destroy the image of God in man, * the more we shall try, by purity of life * to be a living temple of the Holy Spirit, * O Heart of Jesus!

The more Thy Holy Church is despised, * the more we shall endeavor * to be her faithful children, * O Sweet Heart of Jesus!

The more Thy vicar on earth is persecuted, * the more we will honor him * as the infallible head of Thy Holy Church, * show our fidelity, and pray for him, * O Kingly Heart of Jesus!

O Sacred Heart, * through Thy powerful grace, * may we become Thy apostles * in the midst of a corrupted world, * and be Thy Crown in the Kingdom of Heaven. - Amen

(* Means to pause - Especially, when said together as a group.)

May 2, 2007

O Salutaris Hostia...

O salutaris Hostia,
Quae caeli pandis ostium:
Bella premunt hostilia,
Da robur, fer auxilium.

Uni trinoque Domino
Sit sempiterna gloria,
Qui vitam sine termino
Nobis donet in patria.

As a liturgical text,
the hymn is usually sung in Latin.
Literal Translation
O salutary Host,

Who expandest the door of the sky,
Hostile wars press.
Give strength; bear aid.

To the Lord One in Three,
May there be sempiternal glory;
for life without end
he gives to us in our homeland.

O salutaris Hostia, "O Saving Host", is a section of one of the Eucharistic hymns written by St Thomas Aquinas for the Feast of Corpus Christi. He wrote it for the Hour of Lauds in the Divine Office. It is actually the last two stanzas of the hymn Verbum supernum prodiens, and is used for the Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.

May 1, 2007

The Angelus...

The Angelus...

The Angel of the Lord declared to Mary:
And she conceived of the Holy Spirit.

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

Behold the handmaid of the Lord:
Be it done unto me according to Thy word.

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

And the Word was made Flesh:
And dwelt among us.

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God,
that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray:

Pour forth, we beseech Thee, O Lord, Thy grace into our hearts; that we, to whom the incarnation of Christ, Thy Son, was made known by the message of an angel, may by His Passion and Cross be brought to the glory of His Resurrection, through the same Christ Our Lord. Amen.
"Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with you" (Lk 1:28)
"Blessed are you among women,
and blessed is the fruit of your womb" (Lk 1:42).

April 5, 2007

Prayer for the Poor Souls

God of Justice, God of Mercy, You have no choice but to love us because love is the only word in your vocabulary. Love is the only thing You think of or say or do, even when we deserve punishment for our sins.

Give us the grace to by-pass the purifying flames of Your love in purgatory by now living lives of sincere prayer, fervent self-denial, and unselfish love.

Help us to unite our labors of love with those of your divine Son to win the release of those suffering souls who have been part of our lives, especially our family members, relatives, friends, benefactors, and those You want us to remember to pray for.

Keep us alert to the indulgences we may gain to help our departed brothers and sisters, by making the Stations of the Cross, by reading Sacred Scripture in a prayerful way, by spending time before the Blessed Sacrament, and by reciting the Rosary with others at home or in Church.

Lord, we know that where the poor souls are now we may well be soon. Their cries are pleading for our prayers at this very moment! "Have mercy on me, have mercy on me, at least you my friends because the hand of the Lord has touched me."

Eternal rest grant unto them O Lord, and may perpetual light shine upon them. May their souls and all the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God rest in peace.  -  Amen.


Can we help those who are in Purgatory? Definitely! That's why the Church provides us with a memorial Mass for all the faithful departed. We're praying for those who died in the arms of Jesus but who have not yet reached the full glory of heaven. Think of your loved ones who died believing in Jesus and wanting to be loved by Jesus. Even if there was the smallest seed of faith in them, as long as they didn't reject Jesus when he came for them as they took their final breath, they are with him now.

We can be assured of this because of what Jesus said in today's Gospel reading. The Father's decision is that everyone who recognizes Jesus as the Son of God, believing that he is our Savior and the Redeemer of our sins, will have eternal life. "And I shall raise him on the last day," Jesus promised.

However, rarely does anyone die in the full state of grace, perfect in holiness. Most still have unrepented or unexpiated sins ("unexpiated" means insufficient penance has been made to rectify the damage of sin). And God wants all of his children to receive the fullness of his perfect love, which means being united to him in a state of complete holiness. Nothing unholy exists in heaven, so when souls realize what they've forfeited by clinging to their sins, they want to be purged. They gladly choose the state of Purgatory to reach the state of full grace.

Our loving prayers help them make the transition.

Pope Leo XIII wrote in his encyclical on the Eucharist, "Mirae Caritatis", on May 28, 1902: "The communion of saints is nothing else but a mutual sharing of help, satisfaction, prayer and other good works, a mutual communication among all the faithful, whether those who have reached Heaven, or who are in the cleansing fire, or who are still pilgrims on the way in this world."

Through Jesus and our love for the souls in Purgatory, we can do penances on their behalf in imitation of Jesus who was crucified on our behalf. Such penances include prayers, alms-giving, fasting, sacrifices, good works and other acts of piety. A bonus benefit is that we're also purified, here on earth instead of later after our own deaths, because such deeds made on behalf of others will increase our own holiness.

By offering Masses for the souls in Purgatory, publicly and privately, we consciously give them our love and we commend them more fully to Jesus' love. The celebration of All Souls Day and the whole month of November is given over to this important ministry of the Church. What are you going to do this month that will help your loved ones who've gone Home to Jesus but who are probably not yet enjoying the fullness of his love for them?

March 4, 2007

The Method of Centering Prayer...

Centering Prayer is a method designed to facilitate the development of contemplative prayer by preparing our faculties to cooperate with this gift. It is an attempt to present the teaching of earlier time (e.g. The Cloud of Unknowing) in an updated form and to put a certain order and regularity into it. It is not meant to replace other kinds of prayer; it simply puts other kinds of prayer into a new and fuller perspective. During the time of prayer we consent to God's presence and action within. At other times our attention moves outward to discover God's presence everywhere.

The Guidelines

1. Choose a sacred word as the symbol of your intention to consent to God's presence and action within.

2. Sitting comfortably and with eyes closed, settle briefly and silently introduce the sacred word as the symbol of your consent to God's presence and action within.

3. When you become aware of thoughts, return ever so gently to the sacred word.

4. At the end of the prayer period, remain in silence with eyes closed for a couple of minutes.

Explanation of the Guidelines

"Choose a sacred word as the symbol of your intention
to consent to God's presence and action within."

The sacred word expresses our intention to be in God's presence and to yield to the divine action. The sacred word should be chosen during a brief period of prayer asking the Holy Spirit to inspire us with one that is especially suitable for us. (Examples: Lord, Jesus, Abba, Father, Mother Other possibilities: Love, Peace, Shalom) Having chosen a sacred word, we do not change it during the prayer period, for that would be to start thinking again. A simple inward gaze upon God may be more suitable for some persons than the sacred word. In this case, one consents to God's presence and action by turning inwardly toward God as if gazing upon him. The same guidelines apply to the sacred gaze as to the sacred word.

"Sitting comfortably and with eyes closed, settle briefly and silently introduce the sacred word as the symbol of your consent to God's presence and action within."

By "sitting comfortably" is meant relatively comfortably; not so comfortably that we encourage sleep, but sitting comfortably enough to avoid thinking about the discomfort of our bodies during this time of prayer. Whatever sitting position we choose, we keep the back straight. If we fall asleep, we continue the prayer for a few minutes upon awakening if we can spare the time. Praying in this way after a main meal encourages drowsiness. Better to wait an hour at least before Centering Prayer. Praying in this way just before retiring may disturb one's sleep pattern. We close our eyes to let go of what is going on around and within us. We introduce the sacred word inwardly and as gently as laying a feather on a piece of absorbent cotton.

"When you become aware of thoughts,
return ever-so-gently to the sacred word."

"Thoughts" is an umbrella term for every perception including sense perceptions, feelings, images, memories, reflections, and commentaries. Thoughts are a normal part of Centering Prayer. By "returning ever-so-gently to the sacred word", a minimum of effort is indicated. This is the only activity we initiate during the time of Centering Prayer. During the course of our prayer, the sacred word may become vague or even disappear.

"At the end of the prayer period,
remain in silence with eyes closed for a couple of minutes."

If this prayer is done in a group, the leader may slowly recite the Our Father during the additional 2 or 3 minutes, while the others listen. The additional 2 or 3 minutes give the psyche time to readjust to the external senses and enable us to bring the atmosphere of silence into daily life.

Some Practical Points
• The minimum time for this prayer is 20 minutes. Two periods are recommended each day, one first thing in the morning, and one in the afternoon or early evening.
• A timer can indicate the end of the prayer period, providing it does not have an audible tick or loud sound when it goes off.
• The principal effects of Centering Prayer are experienced in daily life, not in the period of Centering Prayer itself.
• Physical Symptoms
       o We may notice slight pains, itches, or twitches in various parts of the body or a generalized restlessness. These are usually due to the untying of emotional knots in the body.
       o We may also notice heaviness or lightness in the extremities. This is usually due to a deep level of spiritual attentiveness.
       o In either case, we pay no attention, or we allow the mind to rest briefly in the sensation, and then return to the sacred word.
• Lectio Divina provides the conceptual background for the development of Centering Prayer.
• A support group praying and sharing together oncee a week helps maintain one's commitment to the prayer.
Extending the Effects of Centering Prayer into Daily Life

       1. Practice 2 periods of Centering Prayer daily.
       2. Read Scriptures regularly and study Open Mind, Open Heart.

Points for Further Development:

During the prayer period various kinds of thoughts may be distinguished
       • Ordinary wanderings of the imagination or memory
       • Thoughts that give rise to attractions or aversions
       • Insights and psychological breakthroughs
       • Self-reflections such as, "How am I doing?" or, "This peace is just great!"
       • Thoughts that arise from the unloading of the unconscious

During this prayer, we avoid analyzing our experience, harboring expectations or aiming at some specific goal such as:
       • Repeating the sacred word continuously
       • Having no thoughts.
       • Making the mind a blank.
       • Feeling peaceful or consoled.
       • Achieving a spiritual experience.

What Centering Prayer is not:
       • It is not a technique.
       • It is not a relaxation exercise.
       • It is not a form of self-hypnosis.
       • It is not a charismatic gift.
       • It is not a para-psychological phenomenon.
       • It is not limited to the "felt" presence of God.
       • It is not discursive meditation or affective prayer.

February 3, 2007

Keep the Faith & Pray!

Each and everyone one of us are going through tough times right now,  but God is getting ready to bless you in a way that only He can.

Keep the faith.

This prayer is powerful, and Prayer is one of the best gifts we receive. There is no cost but a lot of rewards.

Let's continue to pray,
For one another.

The prayer:

I ask You to bless
my friends, relatives and those for whom I care deeply, who are reading this right now...
Show them a new revelation of
Your Love and Power.
God, I ask You to minister to them
At this very moment....
Where there is pain,
Give them Your peace & mercy.
Where there is self-doubt,
Release a renewed confidence
Through your grace.
Where there is need,
I ask you to fulfill their needs.
Bless their homes, families, finances,
Their goings and their comings.
In Jesus' Precious name. Amen.

If the Lord lays it upon your Heart to copy this & send it to someone, Please include my blog address.
Thank You & God Bless You!

January 3, 2007

Inner Detachment

If God is to enter into you, then human or animal nature must go out of you. Where this nature ends, God begins.
God does not desire more of you than that you should go out from yourself, insofar as you are burdened with your nature, and let God be God in you. The slightest image you have of yourself is as big as God; it holds you away from your whole God. To the extent that such an image enters you, God must yield, and to the extent that this image goes out, God enters in.
Self-love is the root and cause of all evil; it snatches away all that is good and all that is perfect. Therefore if the soul is to know God, it must also forget itself and lose itself. For as long as it sees itself, it will not see and perceive God. But when it loses itself for God's sake and leaves all things, then it finds itself again in God because God dawns for it - and only then does the soul perceive itself and all things, after having detached itself utterly from them, in God.
Anyone who lets go of things in their trivial, incidental being will possess them in their pure, eternal essence. Whoever has let go of them in their lower being, in which they are perishable, will receive them again in God, in whom they truly are.
See, your heart at times feels strangely aroused and averted from the world: this comes from the grace that lifts up the soul, for if the soul is to become godly, it must be raised up above itself.
It is an unmistakable sign of the light of grace when someone turns of his free will away from the transitory toward the highest good - God.
Such a soul should not seek outside, for in the school of the heart the Holy Spirit teaches the soul the things that pertain to its blessedness. The soul holds itself in readiness to receive the gift, which God usually bestows on his very dearest friends. This soul tries to do all its works as perfectly as possible in accordance with God's dearly beloved will and strives always to have a clear conscience; it does this by having a disdain for worldly doings and a love for suffering, so that grace may increase in it and the evil desire of the flesh may decrease.

And in order that the soul may be aware that it is a child of grace of the heavenly Father, it accepts with the same courage all things from God, whether good or bad.
Nothing makes a true man but the giving up of his will. The only perfect and true will comes from entering into God's will and being without self-will. For the whole perfection of man's will means being in harmony with the divine will by willing what God wills, and the way he wills it.
At the time when the angel appeared to our dear Mary, nothing that she had done would ever have made her the mother of God; but as soon as she gave up her will, at that same hour she became mother of the Eternal Word and conceived God in that hour.
Never has God given himself nor will he ever give himself to an alien will. Only where he finds his will does he impart himself and leave himself, with all that he is.
This is the true inner detachment: In it, the spirit stands immovable in the face of everything that befalls it, whether it is good or bad, honor or disgrace or calumny, just as a broad mountain stands immovable in the face of a little breeze.
The just hunger and thirst so very much for the will of God, and it pleases them so much, that they wish for nothing else and desire nothing different from what God decrees for them.
If God's will should please you in this way, you would feel just as if you were in heaven, regardless of what happens or does not happen to you. But those who desire something different from God's will get what they deserve: they are always in misery and trouble; people do them a great deal of violence and injury, and they suffer in every way.
We deafen God day and night with our words, "Lord, thy will be done." But then when God's will does happen, we are furious and don't like it a bit. When our will becomes God's will, that is certainly good; but how much better it would be if God's will were to become our will. But as it is now, when you are sick, of course you don't want to be well against God's will, but you wish that it were God's will for you to get well. And when things are going badly for you, you wish that it were God's will for you to get along easily! But when God's will becomes your will, then if you are ill - it will be in God's name! If your friend dies - it will be in God's name!
Anyone who by God's grace unites his will purely and completely with God's will has no need other than to say in his ardent longing: "Lord, show me what is thy dearest will and give me strength to do it!" And God will do this, as truly as he lives, and to such a one he will give in great abundance and all perfection.
There is nothing a man is able to offer God that is more pleasing to him than this kind of detachment. God cares less for our watching, fasting, or praying than for this detachment. God needs nothing more from us than a quiet heart.
Every creature must grow dark so that God, the Light, may grow bright. For "the Light shines in the darkness."
If you wish to find complete comfort and joy in God, then see to it that you are free of all creatures and all their consolations. Believe me, so long as they comfort you and please you, you will never find the true comfort. But when there is nothing that can comfort you other than God, then truly he will comfort you, and with him and in him everything that is sheer bliss.
For the soul on whom God has dawned, who perceives him to some extent, all creatures have become too small and altogether nothing.
I dare to say that such people are happy in these times; for everything that happens to them is what they want. They love God in everything, and because of that their joy is in everything and about everything, at all times in the same way.
This is man's perfection: to be detached from and stripped of everything created; to conduct oneself uniformly in everything and toward everything, to be neither broken by misfortune nor puffed up by good fortune; not to feel greater joy about this than about that - neither greater joy nor greater fear.
For the one who truly loves, everything apart from God, who is the true being, becomes a nothing - nothingness itself.
No one must imagine that it is impossible to attain this, for it is God who does it. Some may say they do not have it. To this I say that I am sorry. But if you do not desire it, I am still more sorry. If you cannot have it, then do have a longing for it! And if you cannot have the longing, then at least long to have the longing!
Because of this the prophet says, "I long, O Lord, to have a longing for thy righteousness."
That we may desire God in the sense that he may be born in us - may God help us to this!
Sin and Justification
God is "the end and the goal." This means that everything is good that relates to the goal or is in accord with the direction toward the goal.
Since the soul is of heaven - that is, of God, who is a heaven of the soul - and the body is of the earth, they are opposed to each other in every way. Truly the body is a prison of the soul.
We should not believe, however, that every evil inclination comes only from nature. It also comes from the evil of habitual sinning. We need not be overcome by our enemies, as people often suppose; for although they do set on fire the evil in us, they are not the cause of it. There is in man a hidden fire, and this the devil can certainly rake up and fan into flame - but we can resist him. God has given man a free will, which is not predetermined to go in one certain direction.
Inclination to sin is not sin; but the will to sin - that is sin. The inner pleasure in an evil thought - that is sin, and it generates death.
What is the essence of sin? Sin comes from turning away from blessedness and from what is morally good. The meaning of this turning away is that man turns away from the One -- that is, God -- into the "many", and in this way he himself is scattered and dissipated. "Their heart is divided; now they shall perish."
There are two sides to every sin. One is that it turns to goods that perish, such as are offered by world, flesh, and devil. And correspondingly, it turns away from the one unchangeable good. In this latter lies the core of sin and its formal definition.
Psychologically seen, every sin is sin because of the fact that it is pride and therefore transgresses God's command. Just as humility is the most genuine preparation for every grace, so arrogance is the direct opposite of grace and is therefore the root of all vice and, as it were, the shape it commonly takes.
Mortal sin, says Augustine, is a failure of nature, a dying of the soul, an unrest of the heart, a disease of the powers, a blinding of the intellect; mortal sin is misery for the emotions, death of all virtues, death of all good works, error of the spirit, fellowship with the devil, exclusion from Christianity, a hellish prison.
God created the soul, not so that it might be a part of his nature, but so that it might be a nature of godly nobility. If it were not of divine nobility, then for God to throw himself into a perishable creature would be much too base a thing.
That man alone is truly a noble man who is newly created, who is made from an unjust man into a just man in the Holy Spirit and reborn to God in real remorse.
There are three ways in which we should cleanse ourselves of sin: first, in our hearts, by remorse: "My beloved is to me a bundle of myrrh" - you must be sorry for all your sins; second, with our lips, through confession: "Confess your sins to one another, and you will be healed"; three, by our actions, in making amends: "Thou shalt travail in pain like a woman in childbirth."
I tell you that a man who is now a sinner can become a good man by nightfall. Man can come to new life even while he eats and drinks.
So strange as men's temperaments are, so strange are their ways of coming to God. God draws one man to himself through joy, another through pain and blows. Sometimes God works through the mediation of living beings, sometimes without them, sometimes through the word of a preacher - but he can also come into the heart without any mediator.
But no one can force the soul, nor does God himself wish to force a soul. God has given the soul the free disposal over itself, that is, he never wishes to do anything to it against its free will.
If God had to create a thousand heavens and earths, he would do this with his own strength and without help from any creature. But if he wishes to convert the sinner, he needs to have the sinner help him. He will not convert you without your cooperation.
Salvation is something no one can earn for himself. Grace in its purity does not come out of any previous merits of nature; not out of anything that nature is capable of; it is not based on works of righteousness, but rather - out of grace that is characteristic of God alone and matches his compassion.
A man should not be uneasy about whom God chooses or does not choose; he should regard all these things purely as a matter of God's honor and leave them to the divine almighty power, so that they are just as pleasing to him as they are to God. Then he can say, with Christ, "Father, thy will be done in all things, not my will!"
God's nature is like this: It does not seek anything outside of itself, but stays within itself. It is goodness when he imparts himself and shares himself with all living beings. It is the nature of goodness that it has to pour itself out, no matter where it is.
Thus our entire existence and life results from God imparting himself to us and giving himself completely to us.
And the benefit we have received calls for thanksgiving. What better thing can we have in our hearts, what better thing can we say, by mouth and deed and written word, than: Thanks be to God! "One cannot say anything shorter, hear anything more beneficial" (Augustine). Why? - Because thanksgiving is nothing other than a kind of blessing on the good, a joy in and about the good. And that is surely an extremely natural and wonderful thing, just like the blossom or fruit of a good action.
And yet we do not need to thank God for the fact that he loves us. For he must love; he cannot do other than love, whether he wants to or not; it is an essential part of his being, and therefore he gives his love, not as the result of having reflected about himself, but just the way the sun shines - that is the way he loves. But I must thank him for being so good that he cannot do otherwise than love; that he cannot let go of his goodness, and simply must love me; and I want to ask him to make me worthy to receive, and I want to praise him because his nature and essence is such that he must give.
There are four principal reasons why we should serve God. The first is the moral or ethical beauty of this service: "Beauty without stain is the work of his hands." The second is the gratification that is part of such service: "Bliss is in thy right hand." The third is usefulness: "Devoutness is useful in every way." Everything that is good is attributed to these three. Yet if service to God were not easy as well, it would be generally neglected; so the fourth thing for servants of God is that it is easy: "My yoke is easy and my burden is light."
"Good is learned by toil," says Seneca; "evil is learned even without a teacher." Nothing in fact is so sweet and easy as going to ruin - nothing so bitter as being ruined. And on the other hand, nothing causes so much pain as to become good - nothing causes so much happiness as to be good.
There are two reasons why men are right in fearing the Lord. First, because he is all-knowing, and so no guilt can be hidden from him, not only of transgression, but also of omission: "Everything lies bare and open to his eyes." Second, because he is the all-just, and so nothing goes unpunished by him: "Do not fear those who kill the body; rather fear him who is able to fling both body and soul into hell!" True fear, then, is the fear of losing God.
It is essential to have remorse for one's sins. There are two kinds of remorse. One is earthly or physical, the other divine and supernatural. Earthly repentance sinks down deeper and deeper into pain and puts the person in such misery that he is close to despair. The pain persists, and the remorse does not move forward and therefore remains fruitless. Divine remorse, however, is quite different. Just as soon as the person finds his sin displeasing, he immediately raises himself to God and begins eagerly turning away from all sin to a decisive will; he then forms a firm trust in God and gains great confidence. And from this comes an inner joy that uplifts the soul out of all pain and distress and strengthens it in God.
To have sinned is not a sin, provided we are sorry for it. Man should be unwilling to commit a sin for anything in time and eternity, neither a mortal sin nor a pardonable sin nor any sin whatsoever. But anyone who understands God's ways should always keep it in mind that God, the faithful, in his love took man out of a life of sin and brought him to a life in God, turning his enemy into a friend - and that means more than creating a new earth.
When a man really leaves his sins behind and turns away from them, then for God, the faithful, it is just as if the man had never fallen into sin, and he will not for a moment let him pay for all his sins.
And with that man God wishes to have all the close communion that he has ever had with creatures. If only he finds him ready now, he does not take into consideration what he was before.
Only go to Christ - he has fully atoned for all guilt! In him you may offer the worthy sacrifice to the heavenly Father for all your guilt.
Because of this, man with all his sins and crimes should place himself in the wounds of our Lord Jesus Christ and should consider himself unworthy and commend himself to the worthy Mother of our Lord and should offer himself up to the heavenly Father and his Son; the heavenly Father must love either both or neither.
The truly loving person loves God in everything and finds God in everything. He takes everything as willed by God, and God's will is sweet to the one who loves. His will is so very great; for he is in every single thing, in this as well as that, in the smallest as well as the biggest, in one as well as all, in bad as well as good, in adversity as well as pleasant things: "He has poured it out over all his works." True and perfect divine love can be tested by whether one has great hope and confidence in God. For there is no better measure by which to tell whether one has great love than that of great trust.
All those who have soared up to boundless trust in him - these he has not let go of again. He has done great things with them; of such people he knows well that this trust arises out of love.
The loving soul shall enjoy the freedom of casting all its heart's cares upon him. For it would be great mistrust on the part of a person who subjects himself to God if he were to be afraid of going to destruction, instead of trusting God, who is so overwhelmingly kind and generous that he is more ready to give than we are to receive.
God does not abandon his children, who even bear his image. Just as he does not forsake the flowers and other insensible creatures, which he nourishes with dew and clothes with color - even the fish in the sea and the animals in the woods and the birds in the air he does not forsake - so how could he leave his children, to whom he wants to give his everlasting joy, and even himself?
The place to which the soul with its faculties and senses is not able to penetrate - to that place faith carries it. If I am to be brought near to God, who is the central point of all being, equally distant and equally close to everything that is created, - if I am to be brought close to Him, then my natural understanding must be raised up above itself, by a light that is higher than it.
We believe those things that are unknown to our natural senses; of these things the good man has a certainty by virtue of his faith. The less you perceive and the more firmly you believe, the more your faith is worth and the more deserving it is of respect and praise. "By faith we live," and "Whoever wishes to approach must believe."

He who loves God denies himself and lets go of the whole world. It is therefore entirely fitting that man is presented with the mystery, incomprehensible as it is, so that he may thereby learn to deny himself and to believe God with his whole soul and to give himself completely to God and not to anything else. For it is love that "believes all."

The reason we do not find God is that we can't get past parables or comparisons; for we are seeking Him who has no comparisons.

Bondage and Freedom
Here is the perfect man: senses are thoroughly subjected to the spirit; fear is transformed into love, and all unrest in the soul is laid to rest. If he were at liberty to do evil, he would have no pleasure in it and would not be able to sin. This is why it is written: "Live always in my presence and be perfect."
So if you want to know whether what you do, either inwardly or outwardly, is from God or not, and whether it is God who does it in you, then take notice of whether God is the goal of your thinking; if so, then your actions are good.
The soul does not rest until it destroys everything that is not God and finds divine freedom.
That person is free who clings to nothing and to whom, nothing clings. That soul is completely free, that has risen above everything that is not God, because this soul with its desire clings neither to created beings nor to itself.
In this life we can never be empty of every kind of fault. If a man were willing to accept this for God's sake - that is, to the extent that it is God's will that human nature has defects (this is true in particular as a consequence of the sin of the first man, but also even if that were not so) - and if he wished to submit to this for God's sake, then he would feel completely right about this in his mind, and he would surely be comforted in his distress.
Humility is man's way to God; compassion is God's way of going to meet humility.
It is true humility when a man is constantly aware of what he is by nature: a something created out of nothing, and he therefore does not ascribe or appropriate to himself whatever good God does in him, any more than he was able to when he did not yet exist. True humility therefore means subjecting oneself to God, and to him alone.
Now there are some people who say, "If I have God and God's love, I can do everything I want to." They do not understand the words rightly. As long as you demand something that is against God and against his command, then you do not have God's love. You may be deceiving the world; into thinking you have it. The man who lives in God's will and in God's light enjoys doing everything that is pleasing to God and not doing all the things that are against God.
Abhorrence of evil and separation from sin - this above all belongs to the spirit of sonship; and with that goes conquest of the passions, "to rule over them," in other words to subdue them or root them out.
Some good people speak as if what we must do is to become so perfect that no love of any kind can move us and that we cannot be touched by either good or bad! They are being unfair to themselves. I don't believe any saint is so great that he could not be moved. You think that because words can still move you to joy or sorrow, you are therefore imperfect? This is not so! Christ himself did not have that, this is shown by his lament: "My heart is ready to break with grief." Christ was so deeply hurt by words - and this even came from his innate nobility and from the holy union in him of divine and human nature - that if the pain of all creatures were to fall upon one creature, it would not be such a great pain as the pain Christ had.
For this reason I say: There never has been a saint - and this will remain true - who is not hurt by pain and comforted by joy.
Oh, these good people who want to go so far that the manifest presence of things simply ceases to exist for them! They won't manage it! I shall never come to a point where a hideous din is just as pleasant to my ears as sweet music of strings! One should, however, by all means attain to this: that an upright will that is formed by God should rid itself of all natural pleasure; and should wise caution detect an occasion when the will must be told to about-face, the will should say, "I will gladly do this."
The perfecting of virtue is not possible without a fight. It is easy to demonstrate and describe virtues; but truly to have them is very rare indeed.
Whether one has perfect virtue can be tested by whether one finds himself inclined toward the good above all else and whether he does the works of good without a special decision of the will and without holding up before himself a special purpose, a large moral goal. The habit of good comes about and is made to count through frequent repetition of individual deeds. Virtue thus comes into being more by itself and out of love for the good, without a why; and only in this way, not before, will one have perfect virtue.
Meantime one must grow and progress at all times, without ceasing - and one will never come to the end of that.
Never shall we be satisfied; with what we have attained, never must we stand still. In this life there is no standing still. Anyone who wants to overcome the devil and to do wonders without delusion must persevere in daily battle against every sin by which the devil might defeat us, and have patience in adversities.
Some people are not so much afflicted by weaknesses or failings, others more so. Through contact with the world of things, the outer man is stirred, possibly tempted to anger or to vanity or to sensuality, depending on the circumstances. This is very often a sheer weakness of nature; for instance, many a person is naturally disposed to be easily angered or to be arrogant, and so on, and yet he does not want to do the sin. Such a one then deserves much more praise and his reward is much greater and his virtue much nobler than in the other case.
Therefore let a man only direct his will to God in everything he does and have God alone before his eyes. Then he may go his way quietly and have no fears and no misgivings about whether he is on the right way or is doing anything wrong. If a person who wanted to walk a certain distance were to consider first how he should put his foot down, he would never arrive at the goal.

One should therefore simply follow the direction.
In this way one arrives there, and that is good.

From the booklet Meister Eckhart spricht (Munich, 1925).
This article and others may be found at