Saturday, 17 September 2016



O Christian soul, profit yourself, and for those around you, by the relations which God has established between the Eucharist and childhood.

The God of the Tabernacle calls children unto Him, and He opens to them the kingdom of heaven: therefore love to become as a child at the feet of the Eucharist!

"I have offered up in his tabernacle a sacrifice of jubilation."— Psa. xxvi. 6.

If you wish, O Christian soul, that piety should direct and animate all your actions, what should be your first care ? The Saviour Himself tells you in these words of His Gospel, " that we ought always to pray and not to faint." What, in fact, is prayer ? It is, the holy Doctors tell us, the elevation of our soul towards God. " Prayer," adds S. Augustine, " detaches us from terrestrial things, and raises us to heaven." But while our soul rises towards God and speaks .to Him, God descends towards us and answers us. "Prayer ascends'' continues the same Doctor, "and mercy descends."

So, between God and the soul, there is established by means of prayer a sweet and perpetual intercourse. The Christian's conversation is in Heaven, as says S. Paul, and, on the other side, according to the expression of a Prophet, God condescends of His goodness to converse with man on earth,  Now, in this respect the Christian life seems completely intermingled with prayer, for it is nothing else than the continual intercourse between earth and Heaven, when prayer asks for grace and Grace gives itself to prayer. It is the thought of S. Bonaventura, —" He who prays well, lives well."

Understand then, O Christian soul, that, if it is your first duty to pray, it is your dearest interest to pray well.

Divine science of prayer, thou art of more value than all human sciences: happy is he who acquires thee ! But how often have you not felt the difficulty of praying well? Precisely, because in prayer our soul should rise to God, every inclination towards earthly things retards and impedes its flight.

Our passions which debase us, our pleasures which distract us, our business which preoccupies us, our work which absorbs us; these are all so many earthly ties which hinder the elevation of our heart. Alas ! it is our nature itself which makes prayer difficult. The angels are happier; they behold the Divine Beauty, and this vision which entrances them rivets their mind and their heart. We, on the contrary, only rise towards God by the help of visible things, and on this long ladder of created objects every step delays us. Prayer is for us an effort. Hardly is our spirit raised on high than it falls to earth again, and only rests itself by vain thoughts, and by dwelling on all the vanities of this life.

Answer me, O Christian soul, is not one of your most bitter sorrows your inability to pray well? You have willingly renounced the deceitful pleasures of the world; but there is one supreme joy which you covet here below, it is that of a loving and fervent prayer. And when your heart is cold, when you come into the holy place, as to a desert land where there is no water, when you can nowhere find the God whom you seek everywhere, are you not troubled and in sorrow ? and your tears, are they not as your meat day and night ?
How should I bless the Lord if in suggesting to you my secret I should teach you to pray better.