June 16 – THE ESSENTIAL THING IS THAT OUR HEARTS BELONG TO GOD

THE ESSENTIAL THING IS THAT OUR HEARTS BELONG TO GOD

During the last two decades of the 19th century, the political situation in France was disturbing to teaching Congregations; however, the two Superiors General of the time were able to advise their confreres in highquality circulars.

“Who can ever drive God from our schools? who can banish him from our thoughts? who can take his place in our hearts? As long as a Brother of Saint Gabriel worthy of the name teaches in a classroom, will not God be there as well? No doubt, God’s name will not always be on our lips, but it will remain in our minds; it will come from them like a flashing light to enlighten the minds; but God will always reign in our hearts and radiate on the baptised souls entrusted to us “The Brother’s modesty, his dignity, his kindness, his zeal, his name, his habit . will proclaim God to his pupils. This way of teaching has its value and its price. This language lacks neither energy nor eloquence. It will therefore yield abundant and lasting fruit. If, after stripping us of our possessions and in the name of conscience, anyone tried, in the name of liberty, to take away our name and habit, we would remember that it is the heart and not the cowl that makes the monk.

“The Congregation will survive as long as each of us, each Brother, keeps the religious spirit intact, if we remain imbued with what St Paul calls the mind of the Lord (Rom 11:34; 1 Cor 2:16).

“The roof sheltering us, the climate in which we live, the clothing we wear, white or black, the distinctive name we bear, none of this matters.

“The essential thing is that our whole hearts belong to God; that we belong to the soul of the Institute rather than to its body; that we may have the mind of the Lord, that is, that we may know and love his thoughts, his views, his designs, his will for souls, for the Congregation and for each of us in particular; that we may act like men who have really the mind of the Lord, that is, men who have received the gift of thinking, feeling, judging and willing like Jesus Christ.”

(Br. Eugene-Marie, circular of 16 June 1882)

 

“In spite of everything, no one will be able to prevent us belonging to God with all our heart, all our will, as we have promised. With humility and self-distrust, but also with great courage and confidence in God, generosity, and abandonment to God as his sons, we can say with Saint Paul, ‘Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will hardship, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? No, nothing will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus’.”

(Br. Hubert, circular of 11 February 1896)

During the last two decades of the 19th century, the political situation in France was disturbing to teaching Congregations; however, the two Superiors General of the time were able to advise their confreres in highquality circulars.

“Who can ever drive God from our schools? who can banish him from our thoughts? who can take his place in our hearts? As long as a Brother of Saint Gabriel worthy of the name teaches in a classroom, will not God be there as well? No doubt, God’s name will not always be on our lips, but it will remain in our minds; it will come from them like a flashing light to enlighten the minds; but God will always reign in our hearts and radiate on the baptised souls entrusted to us.

“The Brother’s modesty, his dignity, his kindness, his zeal, his name, his habit . will proclaim God to his pupils. This way of teaching has its value and its price. This language lacks neither energy nor eloquence. It will therefore yield abundant and lasting fruit. If, after stripping us of our possessions and in the name of conscience, anyone tried, in the name of liberty, to take away our name and habit, we would remember that it is the heart and not the cowl that makes the monk.

“The Congregation will survive as long as each of us, each Brother, keeps the religious spirit intact, if we remain imbued with what St Paul calls the mind of the Lord (Rom 11:34; 1 Cor 2:16).

“The roof sheltering us, the climate in which we live, the clothing we wear, white or black, the distinctive name we bear, none of this matters.

“The essential thing is that our whole hearts belong to God; that we belong to the soul of the Institute rather than to its body; that we may have the mind of the Lord, that is, that we may know and love his thoughts, his views, his designs, his will for souls, for the Congregation and for each of us in particular; that we may act like men who have really the mind of the Lord, that is, men who have received the gift of thinking, feeling, judging and willing like Jesus Christ.”

(Br. Eugene-Marie, circular of 16 June 1882)

“In spite of everything, no one will be able to prevent us belonging to God with all our heart, all our will, as we have promised. With humility and self-distrust, but also with great courage and confidence in God, generosity, and abandonment to God as his sons, we can say with Saint Paul, ‘Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will hardship, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? No, nothing will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus’.”

(Br. Hubert, circular of 11 February 1896)

Date

Jun 16

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