SISTER BENIGNA CONSOLATA FERRERO
(1885-1916)

A PROFESSED CHOIR NUN OF THE ORDER OF THE VISITATION, COMO, ITALY


“On August 25, 1915, He [Jesus] gave me the Decalogue of Love; the day following that of Humility; on the 31st of the same month, that of Perfection; on the 11th of September, He dictated to me the Decalogue of Confidence, and mercifully revealed to me the depth of my corruption; on the 12th, He gave me the Decalogue of Mercy, and on the 28th, the Treatise of Charity; on October 30th, I received His counsels for the time of aridity and for that of spiritual consolations. On the 7th and 12th of November, He dictated to me the Via Crucis; on the 24th, He instructed me on Purity of Intention.”


DECALOGUE OF LOVE
(AUGUST 25, 1915)

1. Give thyself to Love.
2. Abandon thyself to Love.
3. Follow Love.
4. Never go aside from Love.
5. Believe in Love.
6. Second Love.
7. Inculcate Love.
8. Let thyself be inflamed by Love.
9. Let thyself be used by Love.
10. Let thyself be consumed by Love.

1. Love gives Itself to the soul that is given to It without reserve, without falling away, without absorption in other things.

2. Love takes an amorous care of the soul abandoned to It entirely.

3. Love guides, holds by the hand, and if necessary bears the soul wholly surrendered to It.

4. Love incloses within Itself the soul that is once surrendered to It, and permits it not to issue forth except by its own free will; nothing else can withdraw it from the power of Love.

5. Love rejoices when the soul believes in It in all its operations, even the most painful.

6. Love loves to be seconded, favored and assisted; and It makes wonderful progress in the soul that aids It in this manner.

7. Love loves to be communicated; and It increases in the soul that communicates It to others in the same measure with which It is communicated.

8. Love, moreover, burns everything that is ready to burn; and the drier the thing the more quickly and easily it will burn.

9. Love rejoices in disposing not only of the soul, but of all its activities in favor of whomsoever It pleases.

10. Finally Love consumes even to the end that which is given to It if the soul offers no resistance.


DECALOGUE OF HUMILITY
(AUGUST 26, 1915)

1. Thou art nothing; thou art less than nothing, because thou art a miserable culprit, and a sinful nothing.

2. Thou canst do nothing of thyself; one thing only canst thou do, offend Me by abusing My graces and preparing for thy soul eternal damnation.

3. Thou meritest nothing; and therefore nothing judges nothing, says nothing, asks for nothing, and complains of nothing.

4. Nothing is content with everything, because nothing merits nothing, asks for nothing, and complains of nothing.

5. Nothing demands not that others should be concerned about her; and when Superiors are interested in her through charity, she plunges herself in the depths of her unworthiness.

6. My spouse, thou shouldst consider thyself as a rag, but not as a clean rag, that oftentimes is valued because it serves for drying objects; but a rag all soiled, which causes one to shudder on looking at it, which one will not even touch with the hands, and tries to get rid of; or if one must take it in the hand, it is only with the tips of the fingers so as not to get soiled. This is how thou shouldst regard thyself in the Community if thou wouldst keep thy place.

7. Thou shouldst be constantly abyssed in the consideration of thy nothingness, and deem thyself unworthy of all that is given thee.

8. Do not oppose in anything what Love wishes to do with thee. Even if I grant thee great graces, receive them with humility. I have created the world out of nothing: in the world, for example, is the sun, and what a great work the sun effects! And there, too, is the little fly; I have created both and both serve to My greater glory. Do not undervalue any grace, not even the smallest; profit of all, but always through love. Nor is this to be done with sentiment. When does a tree bear fruits and bear them most abundantly? When its roots are buried deep in the earth; and the deeper they are the less they are seen outside. So shouldst thou act: hide thyself more and more in the interior life. In the exterior a common life, exact certainly, but nothing extraordinary; and yet in the interior all extraordinary, beginning with charity, then humility, and then mortification.

9. Willingly let Love call thee away from the earth of thy miseries, whenever it pleases, in order to place thee in the crown of glory of My most sweet Heart for all eternity. The diamond is not seen when it is within the mountain; and yet it does not cease to be there; so is it with the soul which I keep hidden. Imitate also the Angels, who aiding so many human beings are nevertheless unseen.

10. Finally, as long as thou remainest ingulfed in thy nothingness,—and it is this which attracts to thee so many graces—I shall be to thee always a God of goodness, a God of mercy, a God of love; but the day in which thou art elated by pride, I shall become to thee a God of justice. I tell thee this not to frighten thee, but to warn thee, because I love thee so tenderly. If thou dost practice humility, thou wilt find peace; if thou wilt practice it more perfectly, thou wilt find more peace; and if thou wilt live and breathe only humility, thou shalt be pursued by My Love, My predilection and My favors, more than a robber is sought for by the police. O Religious Soul, I would wish to be able to call thee My Humility, and I shall succeed if thou art faithful to Love.


DECALOGUE OF THE HIGHEST PERFECTION
(AUGUST 31, 1915)

1. To tend to the most exalted sanctity, to the most consummate perfection, to the closest, sweetest and most intimate union with God, the soul to whom God grants so great a grace, must keep herself habitually in an abyss of annihilation, of humility, of contempt of self, and oblivion of all things created.

2. When God, as the absolute Master of every creature, draws such a soul from that abyss, where His grace had kept her hidden in order to preserve her in security, the soul ought not, under pretext of humility, to present any obstacle to Love in its amorous operations, but follow Love, like a sponge, which, drawn from the water in which it had been immersed, remains filled with it and not only gives it when pressed, but even loses it without pressure. So also the soul, withdrawn by Divine grace from her abyss of annihilation, ought to bear with her its atmosphere, its perfume and its fruits, not only when pressed, that is, when she is corrected, but at any moment whatever.

3. Once the soul has served Love in whatever He has demanded of her, Love returns her for security to the abyss of annihilation, of humility, and contempt of self; and the soul should feel so contented in this atmosphere that she would in no wise desire to leave it except to serve Love anew. The operations of the soul in this abode of annihilation ought to be in harmony with the interior dispositions of the Word of God in assuming human nature. All the study of this fortunate soul is summarized in these words: Admiration, Adoration, Imitation; and the soul could not be in a better disposition to adore, admire and imitate the annihilation of the Word Incarnate than when habitually immersed in the consideration of her nothingness.

4. When Love, charmed, attracted, and sweetly compelled by the humble soul to visit her with His divine favors, presents Himself to the soul, the first act of this object of the divine predilection should be to prostrate in spirit at the feet of her God, acknowledging her unworthiness; then when God, satisfied with this reception, raises her up to divine converse with Him, it is the duty of the soul to consent immediately with love and joy and gratitude to whatever favor God wills to bestow upon her, were it the most extraordinary, because the soul does not seek it but receives it; and He whose gift it is, will also preserve her in humility. Everything depends on making sure the preparation, the foundation, the base:—
Humility, Humility, always Humility!
When there is humility, I give; when I find more, I give more; and when I see a soul that lives only of humility, desiring only humiliations, that soul draws Me like a magnet.

5. I lead the soul that is faithful to Me, unconsciously but efficaciously, to these things:—
(a) To a great desire of retirement, of forgetfulness of self; and when the soul, on occasions, must have recourse to the charity of Superiors, she feels annihilated as if she were robbing them of their time.
(b) I lead the soul to become the servant of all; to yield always, but without letting it be perceived that she yields; to content others; to do favors to others; to assist others, and this at the cost of continual mortifications; these are the fruits of true love.
(c) I lead the soul to such a hunger and thirst for obedience that she lives no longer except for obedience. This is also a most precious fruit of love; Obedience is the sister of Humility.
(d) Finally I enkindle in the soul that loves Me such a fire of love, of desire of imitation, that she can no longer live except to labor for God, to suffer for God, to immolate herself for God. Sacrifice is her life, as oil is the life of the burning flame.

6. I descend with love into this retreat of the humble soul, buried in the abyss of humiliation and annihilation; and drawing near to her I converse intimately with her and give her a delicious foretaste of Paradise. O who could tell what I say to the humble soul, who could repeat what I reveal to her? These are lessons which Love gives out of love, and because Love gives only to the humble soul the capacity to understand them. The interior disposition which the soul ought to have in this sublime state is this: silence with God, constant attention to God, and supreme gratitude to God while receiving what He gives. It is not humility to refuse favors when God bestows them; but it is true humility to believe oneself unworthy and to accept them, blessing God and magnifying His goodness.

7. A state to which I call the faithful soul in the beginning of her union with Me, is that of special imitation of My hidden life in the womb of My most pure Mother, the august Virgin Mary. This soul is buried in God; God carries her and uses her to do good; but the soul sees nothing, and remains herself unseen; she is the instrument of great good which God effects by means of her, but she is an unknown instrument. And this is the most secure way; it is that of interior souls who have no exterior relations with others; all their goodness is within. It is a personal goodness, efficacious for their neighbor, but entirely hidden.

8. Another state to which I call souls, especially priestly souls and all those who have the care of souls, is the imitation of My hidden life (in Nazareth). This is a less hidden life than that I lived in the womb of the most Holy Mary, My sweet Mother; but it is more difficult to imitate. The concealment is less profound, and it requires more vigilance to act purely for God, to refer everything to God, to receive from God the consolations which are lavished upon these souls when they are doing good to souls. Yes, it is much easier for a soul who works hiddenly to do good purely for God; however, she ought not to be troubled if she is called to the Ministry of souls.
Let her remember that she is only, as it were, a sensible sign,—that it is God who operates: and as in the Sacraments there is a sensible sign which indicates (the hidden work of God's grace), so, also, like a sign, I wish that these souls should be plunged in the most profound sentiments of humility. The good that they will do to souls will be proportionate to their abasement, to their distrust of self and their confidence in God.

9. In whatever state a soul may be when I favor her with special graces, I attract her to the imitation of My Eucharistic Life. It is a life of death that I inspire the soul to live. To have eyes, and see only for the service of Love; to have ears, and no longer hear aught but what can augment Love; to have a mouth, and not use it except to speak of Love; to have hands, feet, heart, body, and no longer use them but as Love wills. To depend on Love for everything as a little babe depends on its mother.
Live only to immolate thyself to the love of thy Jesus, and by every immolation to acquire new strength for the service of Love.

10. Love is joy, love is peace, love is repose, love is tranquillity, love is fidelity; and when this Divine Love becomes Master of a heart, it brings in its train the following gifts: a divine peace, an unwavering confidence, an absolute fidelity, and perfect repose. Henceforth Love remains in this happy soul and makes it the center of its divine favors and the depositary of its most precious graces.


DECALOGUE OF CONFIDENCE
(SEPTEMBER 11, 1915)

1. I have a God who is all mine.

2. This God, all mine, is my Father.

3. This God, all mine, wishes that I should be all His forever.

4. This God of love came down from Heaven to earth on purpose to seek me.

5. This God of love asks me for my heart.

6. This God of love wishes to be to me a brother, friend and consoler.

7. This God of love carries His tenderness so far as to wish to be my physician, my medicine, and more than all, my Spouse.

8. This God of love wishes to be despoiled of His gifts, as a tree is stripped of its fruits, which in no wise complains, but rather produces more fruit. The tree must wait another year, but I produce fruit at once.

9. This God of love seeks only miseries to consume, imperfections to destroy, weak wills to fortify, and good resolutions to strengthen.

10. This God of love goes in search of those whom the world despises, abhors and abandons, that is, of poor sinners; and after having converted them through the delicacies of His charity and the attractions of His mercy, if He meets with the correspondence He seeks, He makes them masterpieces of holiness.


DECALOGUE OF MERCY
(SEPTEMBER 12, 1915)

Viva the Sacred Heart of Jesus, the fountain of all Mercy!

1. I am the God of all Mercy.

2. I seek nothing so much as to exercise Mercy continually.

3. To exercise Justice is for Me to go against the current; it does violence to Me.

4. The door of My Mercy is never closed; it is always ajar; however lightly it is touched, it opens; even a little child can open it, or an old man who has lost his strength.

5. The door of My Justice, on the contrary, is shut and locked; and I open it only to him who compels me to do so; but I never open it spontaneously.

6. Once the soul has crossed the threshold of the door of My Mercy, she falls into the power of Love, who employs every means possible to hinder her from escaping, and to attract her to love her new abiding-place.

7. Having become the happy prisoner of Love, Love sets her at liberty, but only within the precincts of love; because if the soul should issue forth from this enclosure, she would meet death. Love does not prevent her departure, but he averts it and this is the bridle that he puts upon her.

8. The more evil the state to which the soul is reduced by the sins of the past, by her disorders and passions, so much the more pleased is Love to have so much to accomplish in her.

9. Souls the most miserable, the most weak, the most infirm, are the best clients of Love, the most desired by the divine Mercy.

10. These souls, thus become, as it were, the favorites of God, will, like so many living monuments, exalt and magnify the multitude of His mercies, sending up to God the reflections of living light, His own light, which they have received from Him during their mortal life,—the multitude of kindnesses God has made use of to conduct them to eternal salvation. These souls will shine like precious gems, and will form the crown of the divine Mercy.


THE LITTLE TREATISE OF CHARITY
(SEPTEMBER 28, 1915)

1. To love Me, O Religious Soul, with all thy heart, says Jesus, thou shouldst love Me in all creatures, always giving the preference to the neighbor, since thou shouldst love her more than thyself.

2. Thou shouldst henceforth through love consider thy Sisters as so many consecrated Hosts, in whom, beneath the appearance, which may sometimes be defective, thou seest only Me. This will render thee equal with all, for thou wilt no longer make distinctions: thy Jesus is only One, hidden under any person whatever.

3. Thou wilt love Me equally in all; thou wilt compassionate Me, assist Me, and above all, if thou shalt happen to have something to suffer from thy dear neighbor, thou wilt hide it in thy heart, as is done with precious things which are hidden away so as not to run the risk of their being lost.

4. Thou wilt endeavor, on thy part, not to make anyone suffer. This will cost thee, because thou wilt always have to sacrifice thyself; but remember that sacrifice means love, and love means sacrifice.

5. Thou wilt aid thy neighbor as much as thou canst by good example; remember that in the Community thou shouldst be, as it were, the personification of My goodness, My mercy and My charity; therefore, always strive to prefer the interests of thy neighbor to thine own.

6. Assist thy dear neighbor much by recommending her to Me. Thou hast all power over My Heart; therefore, avail thyself of it. Remember that benignity should prevail over everything. Never utter a judgment upon thy neighbor, rather always excuse her. If thou wilt excuse her I will excuse thee before My Divine Father.

7. If thoughts against charity invade thy mind, there is no harm. Weeds hide themselves among good grain without having been sown there; thy task is to root them out at once, and plant there instead a good seed.

8. Regard thy neighbor as the apple of thy eye, since I regard thee as the apple of My Divine Eye.

9. I desire thou shouldst inclose thy dear neighbor in thy heart as in a hot-house of love. In the hot-house the flowers enjoy the sun, but they are not beaten by the tempests nor thrown down by the wind. This is what I desire of thee for thy dear neighbor: that thou expose her to the sun, that is, that thou wilt show her all sorts of exquisite attentions that can warm her heart, but put far from thee all that could wound her in the least, or make her suffer ever so little: that thou take her into thy heart as do the panes of glass, which receive upon themselves the rain, the tempest, the mist, but suffer none of this to pass to the flowers. Ever remember that this is an evangelical maxim: Thou shouldst love thy neighbor as I have loved thee, therefore more than thyself. If thou knewest how I repose in a heart as charitable as this! I find My delights there, and I cause the soul to enjoy them with Me, inundating her with peace, joy and celestial consolations.

10. In thy spiritual relations henceforth, thou shouldst desire for thy neighbor all the spiritual good thou desirest for thyself and appreciate it in her as in thyself.


WHAT OUGHT THE SOUL TO DO IN A STATE OF ARIDITY?
(OCTOBER 30, 1915)

1. Humiliate herself.

2. Confide in the immense goodness of Jesus.

3. Watch over herself with a more faithful fidelity.

4. Call Him by the most sweet names.

5. Prepare for Him beautiful surprises on His arrival.

6. When He returns to comfort the soul, let her embrace Him closely, so closely that He can nevermore depart from her.


IN A STATE OF SPIRITUAL CONSOLATION

1. Humiliate herself.

2. To be supremely grateful to God, and find all her delight in Him alone.

3. To lay in a good stock of virtue for the time of aridity.

4. To be always ready for the privation of sensible favors, and to persevere in her faithful service of God, even in the midst of aridity and disgust.


THE WAY OF THE CROSS
(NOVEMBER 7-12, 1915)

FIRST STATION

Jesus is Condemned to Death

O my sweet Jesus, my only God, Love of my heart, condemned to death for me! O my soul, consider who He is that receives this sentence and for whom He receives it. Wilt thou still dread humiliations and fly from mortifications?
No, good Jesus, with thy divine assistance, I will love Thee more and more and never again offend Thee!
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!

SECOND STATION

Jesus is Laden with the Cross

My Divine Spouse runs to the Cross as to a nuptial feast. O infinite love of my God! And I have such a dread of every suffering; only to behold it from afar terrifies me, and I try to escape it. And why, my Jesus, but because I am wanting in love?
My Jesus, my sweet Jesus, give me a love of the Cross!
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!

THIRD STATION

Jesus Falls for the First Time under the Cross

My Divine King, the Love of my heart, lies stretched under the Cross; its weight oppresses Him. O most lovable Jesus, in this enormous and most heavy Cross how clearly I behold the fruit of my sins!
O my dear and good Jesus, grant that I may weep over those sins of mine that are the cause of such great pain to Thee, and grant that I may nevermore return to them!
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!

FOURTH STATION

Jesus Meets His Holy Mother

O tenderly loving Jesus, in thy meeting with Thy most Blessed and Holy Mother, how deeply I am touched, and what lessons it breathes to my heart! It is the revelation of Thy most loving Heart.
O Jesus, grant that I also while bearing the Cross after Thee, may meet Thy most tender Mother and receive from her a word of comfort, so that I may follow Thee faithfully until death!
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!

FIFTH STATION

Jesus is Aided by the Cyrenean

Religious Soul, says Jesus, thou art my Cyrenean whom, in My infinite love, I have chosen that I may lay upon thee the burden which oppresses Me, the burden of My love, of My Mercy, which is unknown to the world. It will be thy mission to console the infinite love of God, which seeks solace from its little creature.
My Jesus, I come to Thee because Thou hast called me. What a sublime mission Thou offerest me to fulfill! O Jesus, O Love, O Sanctity, teach me Thyself to do that which Thou hast willed for me!
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!

SIXTH STATION

Veronica Wipes the Face of Jesus

The religious soul, My spouse, says the Lord, is the little Veronica, who wipes My face every time that she mortifies herself: the veil with which she wipes it, is her soul in which I leave My divine Features portrayed. The more pure and spotless the soul is, the more capable is she of receiving My divine Lineaments. If thou wouldst arrive near to Me thou must pass across My enemies, who are thine also, and from whom thou wilt have much to suffer; but the consolation which a single one of My divine Looks will impart, will repay thee with usury.
Pause, O good Jesus! I am very small, but I will rise on tiptoe to wipe Thy Face. I will use the very finest linen, the whitest and most delicate; and I will prepare this linen for Thee by my fidelity in three things: purity of intention, charity toward my neighbor, and the most ardent love possible toward Thee; and do Thou, O Jesus, celestial Beauty, give me a perpetual remembrance of Thee!
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!

SEVENTH STATION

Jesus Falls the Second Time under the Cross

Why did Jesus fall during His journey to Calvary unless to merit for souls the grace to rise from their falls and to teach them the means of doing so? The infernal enemy conquers religious souls more easily by discouragement than by any other temptation. And it is of supreme importance to know how to triumph over him. He is overcome by unlimited confidence in Jesus; the more frequent the falls, the more should confidence grow in the divine Mercy.
O my good Jesus, who so benignly dost use our continual miseries to feed the fire of Thy divine Mercy, look with pitying eyes upon Thy solicitous purveyor, who lets not a moment pass without giving Thee something to burn!
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!

EIGHTH STATION

Jesus Consoles the Pious Women

The attraction of the most sweet Heart of Jesus is to console those who suffer, to compassionate the miseries of His poor creatures, and ever to show them mercy. Let him who wishes to prove it, come to Me, He says. Let him who would purchase relief and mercy, go to Jesus and present for payment his very miseries; and the merciful Jesus will accept them provided they are offered with humility, confidence and love.
O my Jesus, I will console Thy Heart, so desirous of consuming our miseries, and do Thou console mine by giving me Thy holy peace.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!

NINTH STATION

Jesus Falls the Third Time under the Cross

Jesus wills to bear the torture of this third fall so that he may suffer the more; for the more one loves, the more he desires to suffer; but what the creature could never have attained, the love of Jesus has accomplished. When eternity shall reveal to every soul how I have loved her, says Jesus, the soul will be transported with love for Me.
O dear Jesus, O most sweet Jesus, O most lovable Jesus, when I shall experience some pain which, like a thorn shall pierce my heart, I will rejoice to be able to suffer a little for Thee. Do Thou, O Jesus, give me grace to suffer willingly for Thy greater glory.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!

TENTH STATION

Jesus is Stripped of His Garments

What are the garments, says Jesus, of which I, Love, strip my dear spouses when they have arrived at the summit of Calvary? Calvary, in Religion, is holy Perfection; it is a mountain because souls ascend it with pain. And when the soul has arrived there, Love despoils it, (1) Of all self-will, that it may no longer will aught but what God wills; (2) Of every desire which has not God for its end; (3) Of every longing for natural satisfactions. All this makes the soul suffer much; but she suffers with joy because she is the prey of Love. If she did not love she would suffer all the more, would be more weighed down; but because she loves, Love renders her trials sweet.
O Jesus, Thou who art sweetness itself, and who hast power to sweeten the most bitter bitter ness, I will drink the Chalice of Detachments after Thou hast blessed it; and I shall find it, with Thy grace, more sweet than every other sweetness.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!

ELEVENTH STATION

Jesus is Nailed to the Cross

O my good Jesus, who didst not withdraw Thy hands and Thy feet when they came to nail Thee to the Cross, give me strength never to draw back from the loving operations of Thy grace, which nails me to the Cross,—that is to Thy Love,—with the hammer of Thy divine Will and the nails of the trials that Thou presentest me. Grant me the grace to second these operations as much as I can by my faithful correspondence.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!

TWELFTH STATION

Jesus Dies on the Cross

The Cross, says Jesus, is the throne of My Love, of My Mercy, of My compassionate Bounty. When a King has a reception in his palace, he receives in the throne-hall and seated on his throne. In all thy sufferings rejoice, for thou hast a sign most clear and manifest of My Presence in Thee. If souls knew what it means to suffer, and suffer for God, not a soul would be found who would not be willing to suffer for Him.
My dear Jesus, behold a soul who does not esteem suffering at its real value. My good Jesus, enlighten my mind that I may know its true worth; and move my heart to love that which nature so much abhors.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!

THIRTEENTH STATION

Jesus is Taken down from the Cross

Jesus says to the Religious Soul: Whenever a soul receives with faith and love any occasion of suffering, it is as if she received Me in her arms when taken down from the Cross; the two arms with which the soul receives Me are resignation and love for My divine Will.
O Jesus, Infinite Charity, who hast suffered so much for My love, grant to this poor little heart the grace to suffer through love all that Thy love reserves for me.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!

FOURTEENTH STATION

Jesus is Placed in the Sepulchre

Religious Soul, says Jesus, soul of my spouse. I come to beg of thee in alms a place in thy heart where I may shelter My Love, not dead, but all inflamed. Thou shalt be to Me My solace, and I shall be to thee thy All.
O Jesus, this poor little nothing which has no existence except by Thy Bounty, comes to give Thee with all her heart that which Thy love asks of me. Jesus, my sweet Jesus, sweetest and most benign Jesus, close the door of this new sepulchre which Thou hast chosen; seal it, that no one may enter there, and that my heart may beat only and ever with love for Thee.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!


RESEMBLANCE BETWEEN THE CONSECRATED HOST AND THE RELIGIOUS SOUL
(NOVEMBER 24, 1915)

Religious Soul, says Jesus, look in spirit upon the Sacred Host, and what dost thou see? That It is white and has not the slightest stain.

THIS IS ITS FIRST QUALITY: PURITY

There are three kinds of Purity in an action:—
1. It must be pure in intention: otherwise it is like those fruits which are beautiful in appearance but have a worm within. I do not put worm-eaten fruits on the table of My Eternal Father in Heaven.
2. Purity in execution: it must be done in the best manner possible and through love.
3. Once done, it must not be soiled by thoughts of complacency.

SECOND QUALITY

The Host is round: it has no points nor angles that might hurt one in touching it.
The religious soul should be thus condescending and gentle with the neighbor, never doing anyone harm, never a refusal, as far as one is able; and if one must give a refusal, let her endeavor to accompany it with so much sweetness that the neighbor will be equally pleased.

THIRD QUALITY

The Host is small: see how content I am with little! I hide Myself under the species of bread.
So the religious soul ought to learn how to be contented with little, not thinking too much of self. And besides, she should have a great esteem for little things. A loaf of bread is much larger than the Host, and yet the Host contains Me and the bread does not, because the Host is consecrated and the loaf is not. So in thy life, com posed of so many little actions, if Love consecrates them, they contain Me; as thou performest many little acts of charity I unite Myself more and more to thee; while, on the contrary, al though an action may be greater, more brilliant, if not performed through love, but for a human end, it does not contain Me.

FOURTH QUALITY

The Host is light: and yet It contains Me entirely.
So a soul consecrated by Love becomes light, because Love deprives her of will, judgment and desires. A soul thus despoiled is My delight; and of these faithful souls, I form an army to save the world. The world is running to the precipice, but I will stop it in its mad course with this little troop of generous souls who combat under My leadership.
Finally, the Host has no longer but the appearance of bread: It is no longer bread, It is all Jesus: so a soul who lets herself be possessed by Love, lives no longer for self but all for Love.
Religious Soul, let thyself be guided in all things by Love. Love will always conduct thee to sacrifice by the shortest way, which is obedience. If thou dost obey, thou lovest; if thou lovest, thou dost obey.
A religious soul that thinks to please Me with out true obedience, would be like one invited to a wedding, who, presenting himself without the nuptial robe, would deserve to be cast out. But I do not desire the obedience of a slave; this does not honor Me: I desire loving obedience, that seeks constantly to do better, in order to please Me more and more.
Union of heart with the Mother is for religious the passport to Heaven.


(From “Vademecum Proposed to Religious Souls, by a Pious Author.” Printed for Georgetown Visitation Convent, Washington, D.C., 1921.)