On Contrition of Heart (III)
- From: Weedy <richarra@xxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Sat, 4 Feb 2012 09:59:00 -0800 (PST)
On Contrition of Heart (III)
Do not busy yourself with the affairs of others, nor concern yourself
with the policies of your superiors. Watch yourself at all times, and
correct yourself before you correct your friends. Do not be grieved if
you do not enjoy popular favour; grieve rather that you do not live as
well and carefully as befits a servant of God, and a devout religious
person. It is often better and safer not to have many comforts in this
life, especially those of the body. Yet, if we seldom or never feel
God's comfort, the fault is our own; for we neither seek contrition of
heart, nor entirely forego all vain and outward consolations.
--Thomas à Kempis --Imitation of Christ Bk 1, Ch 21
February 4th - St. Isidore of Pelusium
St. Isidore was born at Alexandria. As a youth he left the city and
became a monk at the Monastery of Lychnos, near Pelusium. He was also
ordained, and became abbot of the monastery.
We still have some 2,000 letters of St. Isidore of Pelusium
He was highly regarded for his devotion to his religious duties and
famous for his correspondence. Still extant are some 2,000 of the
10,000 letters he wrote, filled with pious exhortations and
theological instruction. He was a vigorous opponent of Nestorianism
This is an excerpt from his letter to Bishop Theon:
"We are equally guilty either when we want to revenge our personal
injuries or when we do not rail against the offenses made against God.
When the offenses regard us, we should show kindness and mercy, but we
should exercise rigor when someone offends God. See how weak we are.
We are sensitive about offenses to ourselves to the point of not
wishing to forgive our enemies, and we only have kindness regarding
those made to God.
"Moses did not act this way. He became indignant with the Israelites
when they built the Golden Calf. On that occasion his wrath was much
holier than any kindness he could have shown. Elias took a strong
stand against the idolaters, John Baptist against Herod, St. Paul
against the sorcerer Elimas. They all revenged the offenses made to
God. Regarding injuries to their own persons, they readily forgot
"Even though God is powerful enough to mete out justice, He wants us
to hate sin and to teach this hatred. The saints use to teach this way
of zeal as the way of true wisdom."
Comments of the late Prof. Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira: (died 1995)
The principle defended by St. Isidore of Pelusium in this letter has
several applications we can make.
Moses showed a righteous indignation when the Israelites adored the
Regarding forgiveness of injuries I must be very sensitive to the
offenses made to God, and therefore also to Our Lady and to the Holy
Catholic Church. Offenses to the Holy Church are not only sins against
morals, but also are public manifestations of bad doctrine. I must be
very sensitive to this. On the other hand, regarding offenses to my
own person, I should forgive, forget, and be amiable with my offender.
God deserves everything. But a mere human creature, who is conceived
in sin, who sins and then returns to sin after being forgiven, does
not deserve that much. Therefore, I should not take offenses against
myself too seriously.
I should measure my love for God in this way: If I am very sensitive
to injuries made against me, if I easily give way to interior
movements of anger and resentment because of my self-love, then I do
not love God. On the contrary, if I am calm and understanding in face
of injuries made to me, and at the same time I do not tolerate the
evil done against the Church, the reputation of Our Lady, and the
honor of Our Lord, this is a sign that I love God.
Scriptures says: “For where thy treasure is, there also is thy
heart.” (Matt 6:21). We could paraphrase this, saying: “For where your
indignation is, there also is your heart.” If I do not become
indignant when something or someone is injured, I indicate that I do
not love this thing or person. If someone speaks against God and
against the Church, I cannot consider this a small matter that does
not affect me. If I act in this way, I do not love God.
This is what St. Isidore taught us in his letter. Let us ask him to
help us extirpate from our souls the remains of liberalism that
prevent us from understanding and being completely consonant with this
See Icons at:
"If we should well consider all that is human and imperfect in us, we
should find but too much cause to humiliate ourselves before God and
men, even before our inferiors"
--St. Vincent de Paul
A holy woman, once having asked light of the Lord that she might know
herself well, saw so much ugliness and so many miseries in her own
heart that, not being able to bear the sight, she prayed to God to
relieve her from such distress; for she said if it had lasted longer
she would have sunk under it.
(Taken from the book "A Year with the Saints". February - Humility)
Where pride is, there also shall be reproach: but where humility is,
there also is wisdom. (Proverbs 11:2)
Welcome Be The Holy Will of God!
O Lord, Thou knowest what is best for me. Give what Thou wilt and how
much Thou wilt, and when Thou wilt. Deal with me as Thou thinkest good
and as it best pleaseth Thee and is for Thy honor. Set me where Thou
wilt and deal with me in all things as Thou wilt. Help me to bear my
sufferings for Thy sake, and to say in all sincerity:
Welcome be the Holy Will of God!
When sorrow darkens my life, Welcome be the Holy Will of God!
When sickness strikes me down, Welcome be the Holy Will of God!
When hunger and unemployment threaten, Welcome be the Holy Will of
When hunger and unemployment are my lot, Welcome be the Holy Will of
When my hopes are unfulfilled, Welcome be the Holy Will of God!
When my friends forsake me, Welcome be the Holy Will of God!
When I am unhappy, Welcome be the Holy Will of God!
When enemies injure me, Welcome be the Holy Will of God!
When men calumniate me and speak that
which is evil against me, Welcome be the Holy Will of God!
When my undertakings fail, Welcome be the Holy Will of God!
When the cross presses heavily upon me, Welcome be the Holy Will of
When my last hour comes, Welcome be the Holy Will of God!
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