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Header VOJ 7

 Avoid sin, and
whatever may befall thee,
it will turn to thy advantage.

 Photo of Sacred Heart of Jesus Statue

1. The Voice of Jesus. Look thou, My Child, lest in thy heart there be that sin which causeth the death of the soul.

How canst thou love, or darest thou receive, as a guest, into thy heart, thy deadly foe; who, when admitted, will, without doubt, make thee the slave of hell, the most wretched of men; yea, more base than the irrational beings themselves.

How many there are who exclaim: Alas! What evils ravage the earth! Yet sin is the only evil, and there is none other besides.

 

2. It is marvelous, that a being, gifted with reason, should, of its own accord, commit sin, which, in its very nature, is so unbecoming and detestable, that, even were there no heaven nor hell, it ought to be shunned on account of its inherent foulness.

If thou considerest the infinite majesty of Him that is offended, and the infinite meanness of the one offending; thou wilt understand that sin is in some sort an infinite evil.

Whoever sins mortally, assails God, and would do away with God Himself, if that were possible: nor is it for want of will, on the part of the sinner, that the God of heaven and earth is not destroyed.

 

3. So great an evil is sin, that, in order to destroy this hell-born monster, and to satisfy the divine justice, I, the Son of the Most High, must needs come down from My throne of Majesty, and being made man, suffer during life a ceaseless martyrdom, and, at last, writhing in agony, expire upon a cross.

Alas! Wretched man, how canst thou love to do that, which has cost Me so much? Or how canst thou be willing, for a moment’s pleasure, to renew all My toils, My sufferings, and My most bitter death?

When thou sinnest mortally, thou makest thyself guilty of a far more grievous crime than the Jews, My torturers. For these, had they known Me as the Lord of eternal glory, would never have put Me to death. But thou, thou knowest Me: yea, thou knowest who, and how good I am, and thou knowest this by the experience of My favors.

 

4. Was it not by My charity alone, that I not only created, redeemed, and preserved thee; but that I ever protected, guided, and cherished thee more kindly than the most tender-hearted parent?

Whatever thou art, whatever thou hast, I have given thee, and, over and above all, I have given thee My own Self: and is this the return which thou makest?

Behold, if thou throwest to an animal, devoid of reason, a morsel of the meanest food, it shows thee gratefulness, as much as it is able. But I have bestowed upon thee boundless favors, and, in return, thou persecutest Me, even unto the death! Reflect, then, what shouldst thou think of thyself?

 

5. O child of My everlasting love! Whom I have loved more than My life, sin thou no more.

If thou lovest Me, yea, if thou lovest thyself, flee from sin.

For, whenever thou committest a mortal sin, thou diest in a supernatural manner; thou losest whatever merits thou didst possess; thou dost forfeit thy right to the heavenly inheritance; thou becomest a co-heir with the devils; thou givest the preference to misery over bliss, to hell over heaven, to Satan over Me.

Meditate upon these things, My Child, that thou mayst learn fully, as far as the human mind can understand, how great an evil sin is; and that thou mayst shun that which alone can make thee wretched for evermore.

 

6. The voice of the Disciple. O my soul! Behold sin! Truly the greatest of evils, that places man below the brute, blocks up the gates of heaven, throws open the abyss of hell. O monster to be abhorred, a thousand times more frightful than the demon himself!

O my God! I blush to own it, and disown it I cannot, I have become the vilest slave of sin, and by the greatest madness, the greatest ingratitude, the greatest malice; with it, and by it, I have again and again insulted Thy dread Majesty, before which the awe-struck Angels tremble with reverence.

I feel wholly confounded, because I have become viler than any irrational creature; I have done iniquity, which my reason disapproved, and I have misused all the powers of my soul, all the senses of my body.

 

7. O Lord my God! Thou didst establish in me Thy sweet likeness; and I, after having denied the same, have substituted in its stead the horrid image of Satan; yea, in various ways, I have rendered myself even more horrible than the devil.

He sinned through pride, when no punishment had yet been inflicted for sin; I sinned knowing, but disregarding Thy vengeance: he was placed in innocence but once; I was restored to it so many times: he rose up against Him who made him – I against Him, who also remade me.

Most wretched sinner that I am; for nothing, yea, for an object baser than nothing, I have voluntarily cast aside Thy friendship, the blissful peace of my soul, the right to eternal beatitude; I have delivered myself up, as a hapless slave, to the devil; thus sharing from this time his unhappy condition, and ready to partake of his never-ending torments, unless, returning to my senses, I find mercy in Thy Heart.

 

8. I acknowledge, Lord Jesus, that I am unworthy to find that mercy, which I have so often abused: I am not worthy to serve Thee, since I have become the slave of the devil. If Thou wilt treat me as I deserve, hell must be my abode.

Yet, Jesus, my Savior! there is infinite mercy in Thy Heart: my very sins show this: for unless Thy mercy were infinite, Thou wouldst never have tolerated the infinite malice of my sins.

O Jesus! have pity on me, according to Thy great mercy. A suppliant, I implore forgiveness; I hope that Thou wilt pardon me, a wretched sinner. I am sincerely sorry for the sins I have committed, and I firmly resolve to serve Thee faithfully henceforth, and to love Thee fervently.

 


“Voice of Jesus” is taken from Arnoudt’s “Imitation of the Sacred Heart”, translated from the Latin of J.M. Fastre; Benziger Bros. Copyright 1866 

 

 

Quote of the day

DAILY QUOTE for August 2, 2021

The state of grace is nothing other than purity, and it give...

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August 2

 

The state of grace is nothing other than purity,
and it gives heaven to those who clothe themselves in it.
Holiness, therefore, is simply the state of grace
purified, illuminated, beautified by the most perfect purity,
exempt not only from mortal sin but also from the smallest faults.
Purity will make saints of you!
Everything lies in this.

St. Peter Julian Eymard


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Saint of the day

SAINT OF THE DAY

St. Eusebius of Vercelli

The Arians dragged him through the streets and shut him up i...

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St. Eusebius of Vercelli

Eusebius was born on the island of Sardinia where his father died a martyr. His mother took him and his sister to live in Rome where Eusebius eventually joined the clergy and was ordained a lector. He was sent to Vercelli and served the Church so well there that he was chosen as its bishop. He is the first bishop of Vercelli whose name was recorded.

In 354 he was sent by Pope Liberius to persuade the Emperor Constantius to call a council to settle Catholic-Arian disputes. When it was called at Milan, Eusebius went reluctantly, sensing that the Arians would have their way. He refused to go along with the condemnation of Saint Athanasius, who’s  refusal to tolerate Arian heresy was the cause of many trials and persecutions. Eusebius insisted on Athanasius’ innocence and reminded the emperor that secular force should not be used to influence Church decisions. At first the emperor threatened to kill him, but later sent him into exile in Palestine. There the Arians dragged him through the streets and shut him up in a little room, releasing him only after Eusebius undertook a four-day hunger strike. They soon resumed their harassment.

His exile continued in Asia Minor and Egypt, until the new emperor permitted him to return to his see in Vercelli. He died in 371.

Weekly Story

WEEKLY STORY

In the days of yore, when travel must be had on foot or by h...

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The Virgin Mary Rewards a Bandit

In the days of yore, when travel must be had on foot or by horse, many were the dangers to be found along the roadways. Bandits plagued travelers and made their living by depriving others of their goods and often their very lives.

A young woman in the Papal States, who was very devout towards Mary, met in a certain place a chief of the bandits. Fearing some outrage, she implored him, for love of the most holy Virgin, not to molest her.

"Do not fear," he answered, "for you have prayed me in the name of the mother of God; and I only ask you to recommend me to her." Moved by the woman’s mention of the Blessed Virgin, the bandit accompanied her himself along the road to a place of safety.

The following night, Mary appeared in a dream to the bandit. She thanked him for the act of kindness he had performed for love of her. Mary went on to say that she would remember it and would one day reward him.

The robber, at length, was arrested, and condemned to death. But behold, the night previous to his execution, the blessed Virgin visited him again in a dream, and first asked him: "Do you know who I am?"

He answered, "It seems to me I have seen you before."

"I am the Virgin Mary," she continued, "and I have come to reward you for what you have done for me. You will die tomorrow, but you will die with so much contrition that you will come at once to paradise."

The convict awoke, and felt such contrition for his sins that he began to weep bitterly, all the while giving thanks aloud to our Blessed Lady. He asked immediately for a priest, to whom he made his confession with many tears, relating the vision he had seen. Finally, he asked the priest to make public this grace that had been bestowed on him by Mary.

He went joyfully to his execution, after which, as it is related, his countenance was so peaceful and so happy that all who saw him believed that the promise of the heavenly mother had been fulfilled.

From the Glories of Mary, by St. Alphonsus Maria de Liguori.

In the days of yore, when travel must be had on foot or by horse, many were the dangers to be found along the roadways.