August 4: ST. JOHN MARIA VIANNEY
Patron of Priests. Divine Office 2nd reading.
Dear friends, Happy Feast Day of St. John Maria Vianney to all of you and to all the priests in the world! It is a special day to ask Our Lord for holy and faithful priests and for more priestly vocations all over the world.
I would like to share to you today’s 2nd reading in the Divine Office which speaks about the glorious duty of man, according to the words of the holy Curè d’Ars which I’m sure will do a lot of good if we read and meditate on it.
St. John Maria Vianney, pray for us and for all the priests in the world, especially those who are in most need!
Mary, our Mother, and Mother of all priests of your Son, guide and protects your Son’s ministers that we may do God’s will with the same love, devotion, generosity, sacrifice and dedication shown by the St. John Maria Vianney. Amen.
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From the catechetical instructions by Saint John Mary Vianney, priest
The Glorious Duty of Man: To Pray and to Love
My little children, reflect on these words: the Christian’s treasure is not on earth but in heaven. Our thoughts, then, ought to be directed to where our treasure is. This is the glorious duty of man: to pray and to love. If you pray and love, that is where a man’s happiness lies.
Prayer is nothing else but union with God. When one has a heart that is pure and united with God, he is given a kind of serenity and sweetness that makes him ecstatic, a light that surrounds him with marvelous brightness. In this intimate union, God and the soul are fused together like two bits of wax that no one can ever pull apart. This union of God with a tiny creature is a lovely thing. It is a happiness beyond understanding.
We had become unworthy to pray, but God in his goodness allowed us to speak with him. Our prayer is incense that gives him the greatest pleasure.
My little children, your hearts are small, but prayer stretches them and makes them capable of loving God. Through prayer we receive a foretaste of heaven and something of paradise comes down upon us. Prayer never leaves us without sweetness. It is honey that flows into the soul and makes all things sweet. When we pray properly, sorrows disappear like snow before the sun.
Prayer also makes time pass very quickly and with such great delight that one does not notice its length. Listen: Once when I was a purveyor in Bresse and most of my companions were ill, I had to make a long journey. I prayed to the good God, and, believe me, the time did not seem long.
Some men immerse themselves as deeply in prayer as fish in water, because they give themselves totally to God. There is no division in their hearts. O, how I love these noble souls! Saint Francis of Assisi and Saint Colette used to see our Lord and talk to him just as we talk to one another.
How unlike them we are! How often we come to church with no idea of what to do or what to ask for. And yet, whenever we go to any human being, we know well enough why we go. And still worse, there are some who seem to speak to God like this: “I will only say a couple of things to you, and then I will be rid of you.” I often think that when we come to adore the Lord, we would receive everything we ask for, if we would ask with living faith and with a pure heart.
Let us pray.
Almighty and merciful God, who made the Priest Saint John Vianney wonderful in his pastoral zeal, grant, we pray, that through his intercession and example we may win brothers and sisters in charity for Christ and attain with them eternal glory. Through our Lord.
READING SOURCE: www.divineoffice.org
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