04 March 2009

Fatherly Wisdom-"Lenten Instruction"

Reading IV from For All the Saints (volume I, page 803) gives us this nice little snippet from Caesarius of Arles simply called "Lenten instruction":

Let it not be enough for you that you hear the divine lessons in church, but read them yourselves at home or look for others to read them and willingly listen to them when they do. Although through the mercy of God you frequently and devoutly hear the divine lessons throughout the entire year, still during these days we ought to rest from the winds and the sea of this world by taking refuge, as it were, in the haven of Lent and in the quiet of silence to receive the divine lessons in the receptacle of our heart.

Devoting ourselves to God out of love for eternal life, during these days let us with all solicitude strive to repair and compose in the little ship of our soul whatever throughout the year has been broken, or destroyed, or damaged, or ruined by many storms, that is, by the waves of sins.

During these holy days of Lent if you cannot cut off the occupations of this world, at least strive to curtail them in part. By fleeing from this world, through an expedient loss and a most glorious gain you may take away from earthly occupations a few hours in which you can devote yourselves to God. For this world either laughs at us or is laughed at by us.

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