TRANSLATED FROM THE FRENCH OF MONSEIGNEUR DE LA BOUILLERIE, Archbishop of Perga, Coadjutor of Bordeaux.
Perhaps, O Christian soul, in listening to this discourse, you have said more than once to yourself: " But if it is thus, it were better at once to renounce the world, and live only with the Eucharist." Yes, you are right, and I can only applaud so Christian a resolution.
However, I do not forget that Jesus Christ, preaching to His disciples the most austere virtues of the Gospel, finished His discourse with these words: "All men take not this word." (Matthew xix. 11.).
All, alas! do not understand that the Eucharist is worth more than the world. All do not so easily determine to sacrifice vain pleasures to the purer delights of the soul. Many, in fact—I repeat it—must know how to live in the world.
It is for them that I write these pages. May my words inspire them with sentiments which will be their safeguard.
Firstly, an invincible horror of the offences of the world, which the God of the tabernacle has so often condemned and cursed.
Secondly, an extreme vigilance, in order that the world which they frequent may never have power enough to turn them from the road which leads to the holy Table.
Thirdly, an ardent desire to break one day the bands which retain them in the midst of the world, in order to consecrate themselves entirely to the divine Eucharist.
I desire, O Christian soul, that these three sentiments may be yours. The world will have for you fewer perils, and the Divine help which you have obtained for yourself will save you. " A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand: but it shall not come nigh thee." (Psalm xc. 7.) The cherubim of the tabernacle will keep you under the shadow of their wings.