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Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Entering the Monastery

Here some fragments of a interesting work of Saint Alfonso Maria de Liguori entitled “familiar speech  to a girl who is going to take the religious habit”. I suggest the reading of this speech to all the girls who are still looking for their vocation.

Devout damsel you must keep alive the memory of this lucky day in which you are going to marry Jesus Christ to thank him for this great favour. Don’t think that Jesus owes a debt of gratitude because you leave the world for you love him; but you should have eternal gratitude for the grace of being called to renounce the world. Today you renounce the world: do you believe to lose such a big thing? Earth of thorns, tears and sorrows. The world promises big things to his followers; pleasures, delights and peace: but all ands in deceptions, bitterness and vanities. The same wealth, honours, pleasures become pain and sorrow. Extrema gaudii luctus occupat. May the Lord have mercy on all those blinds who love the world and let their mourning not be an everlasting mourning; because in the world the danger to lose the soul Heaven and God are many, big and inevitable. Poor those girls who deceived by the false promises of the world, leave Jesus Christ and follow the world. They hope to find there pleasures and joy but, poor ones! I say, because they found nothing else than bitterness and thorns, as the experience shows. […] Ask, ask all the married women if one of them is happy. From my experience I say I never found happy one married woman but all of them unhappy and in troubles. But ask those nuns who renounced the world for God and you will see that they want nothing but God, ask if they are happy and they will answer that they always thank god who freed them from the world.[…] In short, if you would have remained in the world, do you think you could get a more powerful spouse than a knight or a noble or a monarch? But you are going to marry the King of Heaven and of all offer the reigns of the earth. How many holy virgins have renounced the weddings with the firsts lords of the earth to be brides of Jesus Christ! […] Leave my dear doughter, leave the young ladies who love the world, all the amusements, vanities, beautiful dresses, comedies, banquets and parties, enjoy Jesus Christ. He, in your cell will make you happier than any of those pleasures, luxuries and richness whom belong to the queens of the earth. There, in your solitary cell, you will enjoy Heaven and a continuous peace. If you love Jesus Christ, you will love the solitude of your cell. In it, your crucified Spouse will intimately speak to your heart; from his cross he will send to your mind, rays of light and burning arrows of holy love to your heart. And têt à têt in your cell with him, you will show him the love you bear him, you will unceasingly offer him yourself and all which belongs to you.You will ask him to grant you the graces you need .You will  tell him your anguishes, fears which make you suffer and He will console you. Do not doubt, the divine Spouse will always console you in life and much more at the hour of your death[…] I said that the women who gave themselves completely to the Lord, enjoy a continuous peace; I’m speaking of the peace which is possible to enjoy on earth, which is called Vale of tears. In Heaven God prepares for us the perfect and fully peace, deprived of any troubles are theubles. This world is for us place where we can earn merits, that’ s why place of sorrow trough which is possible to earn heavenly joys. And truly the Spouse this morning you are going to marry with, although the noblest, the richest, the most powerful you could chose, is called Spouse of blood[…]. He shed all his blood because of scourges, thorns and cloves, to save your soul and all the other souls. Here, now, the lover Jesus goes ahead and calls you to follow him as the bride does. Look at him how he appears: not crowned with flowers but thorn; not robbed with golden precious dresses but with blood and wounds: look at his regal throne where he lies, nothing more than a hard cross where he is on the point of death and where in deep sorrows and disgrace dies for love of you.[…] something else I ask you, when you will take the religious habit to renew every day the promise which you have done, to be faithful to Jesus Christ. Love and fidelity the previous qualities of a bride. For you will receive a ring, sign of fidelity to the love you have promised Jesus But to keep faithful do not trust yourself, your promise; you need to pray always Jesus and His Holy Mother to grant you the holy perseverance; trust with confidence in Mary’s intercession, as she is the Mother of Perseverance. And when you find yourself cool in the divine love and attract to love something else which is not God, remember this other warning: to avoid to fall in tepidity or love of earthly things, say to yourself: why did I renounce the world, my home, my family? Perhaps  to be damned? This thought used to strengthen Saint Bernard,  to take again the way of perfection, when he felt himself tepid. But now it’s time to stop speaking because it’s your Bridegroom who wants I stop. He is longing to see you entering his home. Here, look  his jubilant waiting, listen his loving call, so you can enter in His Royal Palace, which is this monastery. Go and enter joyfully  for your Bridegroom’s welcomes of this morning in receiving you in His home is like a deposit of the welcome at the hour of your death when he will receive you in his heavenly Reign.