Powered by Blogger.

Thursday, 1 July 2010

How the Salvation of the Soul is secured by entering the Religious State.

To know how important is the eternal salvation of our soul,
it is sufficient to have faith,
and to consider that we have but one soul,
and when that is lost, all is lost.

What does it profit a man
if he again the whole world,
and suffer the loss of his soul?

(Mt. 16:26)

This great maxim of the Gospel has induced many youths
either to shut themselves up in cloisters,
or to live in deserts,
or by martyrdom to give up their lives for Jesus Christ.
For, said they, what does it profit us to possess the whole world,
and all the goods of this world, in this present life, which must soon finish,
and then be damned and be miserable in the life to come,
which will never end?

All those rich men, all those princes and emperors, who are now in hell,
what have they now of all they enjoyed in this life,
but a greater torment and a greater despair?
Miserable beings, they lament now and say,
"all those things are passed like shadows." (Wis. 5:9)
For them all is passed like a shadow, like a dream,
and that lamentation which is their lot has lasted already many years,
and shall last throughout eternity.
"The fashion of this world passeth away." (1 Cor. 7:51)

This world is a scene which lasts but a short time;
happy he who plays on this scene that part
which will afterwards make him happy in the life which will never end.
When he shall be contented, honoured, and a prince in paradise,
so long as God shall be God,
little will he care for having been in this world poor, despised, and in tribulation.

For this end alone has God placed us on this earth,
and keeps us here in life,
not to acquire transitory but eternal goods:
The end is life everlasting." (Rom. 6:22)
This is the sole end,
which all men who live in the world ought to have in view.

But the misfortune is,
that in the world one thinks little or nothing of everlasting life.
In the midst of the darkness of this Egypt,
the greatest number of men bestow all their care on
acquiring honour and pleasures;
and this is the reason who so many perish.
"With desolation is all the world made desolate,
because there is none that considereth in his heart."
(Jer. 12:11)

How few are they who reflect
on death,
by which for us the scene is closed;
on the eternity which awaits us;
on what God has done for our sake!
And thence it comes that these miserable beings
live in blindness and at random,
far from God,
having their eyes like beasts, intent only on earthly things,
without remembering God,
without desiring His love,
and without a thought of eternity.
Therefore, they die afterwards an unhappy death and an endless misery.
Having arrived there, they will open their eyes;
but it will only be to lament their own foolishness.

This is the great means of salvation which is found in religious life,
namely: the continual meditation on the eternal truths.
"Remember thy last end, and thou shalt never sin." (Eccl. 7:40)

In all well regulated religious houses this is done every day,
and even several times a day.
And therefore in the light of divine things,
which there shines continually,
it is morally impossible to live, at least for a long time, far from God,
and withoiut keeping one's account ready for eternity.

O my God!
How have I ever deserved this great mercy,
that having left so many others to live in the midst of the world,
Thou hast willed to call me
(who have offeneded Thee more than others,
and deserved more than they, to be deprived of Thy light,)
to enjoy the honour as living as a friend in Thy own house!

O Lord!
Grant that I may understand this exceeding grace
which Thou hast bestowed on me,
that I may always thank Thee for it,
as I purpose and hope to do always during my life
and throughout eternity,
and do not permit me to be ungrateful for it.

Since Thou has been so liberal towards me,
and hast in Thy love preferred me to others,
it is but just that more than others I should serve and love Thee.
O my Jesus!
Thou wouldst have me to be wholly Thine,
and to Thee I give myself wholly.
Accept me, and henceforward keep me as Thy own,
since I am no more mine.

Thou hast called me to Thy house,
because Thou wilt have me become a saint.
Make me then what Thou wilt have me.
Do it, O eternal Father!
For the love of Jesus Christ, in whom is all my Confidence!
I love Thee, my sovereign good,
I love Thee. O infinite goodness!
I love Thee alone, and will love Thee forever.

O Mary my hope,
come to my assistance,
and obtain for me to be always faithful and thankful to my Lord.

(St. Alphonsus,
Consideration I,
Considerations for those who are called to enter the Religious State.)

  © Blogger templates The Professional Template by 2008

Back to TOP