14. LIKE OUR LADY
Rome, February 27, 1947
Today we celebrate the feast of St. Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows.1
He teaches us the love of Jesus in his passion, the contemplation of the sorrows of Mary Most Holy.
The Passion is not something far-away from us. We do not have to go back twenty centuries in time, for the Passion is renewed every day, every moment.
In the Holy Mass we have:
a) the same fruits of the cross that are made applicable to us;
b) the same principal Priest. The one who celebrates is really Jesus Christ. The secondary priest is, as it were, absorbed by Christ and becomes his mouth, voice and hands;
c) the same Victim who was sacrificed on Calvary.
Here is the fount of every grace, all the other means are rivulets of this source. The Blessed Virgin also received every gift from the cross. The immaculate conception itself is a fruit of the anticipated merits of the cross.
Ask for the grace to be present in an ever better way in the Holy Mass, in the spirit of the Most Holy Virgin. You have to get closely into the spirit of Our Lady and have her own sentiments.
The Pious Disciple's whole life is a continuation of Our Lady's life: the Pious Disciple must live with Our Lady.
Long for Priests as Mary Most Holy longed for the Messiah. Oh, what a holy desire! To obtain for the Church, for the world, another one million six hundred thousand Priests! That there may be at least one priest for every two thousand persons.
Practice a great deal of silence. The Pious Disciples are called to live in greater silence and in a hidden way, in order that they may work more effectively in the Church, wherein they form the essential part: the heart. Like Our Lady who is exactly called the heart of the Church.
Imitate the silence and prayer of the Child Mary in her cradle, in the temple, in Nazareth. Pray like her, with her intentions: aperiatur terra, et germinet Salvatorem1 (Let the earth open for salvation to spring up). May there be an increase of the saviors of the world, the Priests.
Consider Mary in the thirty years that she had Jesus with her. Follow her in the public life of Jesus. The pious women who accompanied her, saw the gospel in action in her. Looking at the Holy Virgin, one could say: That is how to be poor, that is how to be meek, that is how to be pure, to be merciful, that is how to suffer, that is how to spread peace...
During the public life of Jesus, Our Lady did not only pray but she cooperated in the ministry of her Divine Son. She kept Jesus company, she prepared his food, his clothes; she was his most faithful listener. In receiving the Word of life, her soul was held fast in intimate union with God and she prayed that the preaching of the gospel may bring forth abundant fruit.
Collaborate in preparing the vocations of young children, in the formation of young people, but collaborate as well with the Priests in the fulfillment of their ministry.
It is not with one or with the other Priest in particular, but with the Priesthood in general.
As Mary was in Jesus' mouth, in his heart, in his work, the Pious Disciple is in the voice, heart, activity of every priest, of all priests. Like Our Lady, the Pious Disciple is an apostle.
Mary continued to fulfill towards the new-born Church, the duty she had towards Jesus. Mary carried this infant Church in her arms like a mother and guided it in its first steps.
Your apostolate is in the heart of the Church, for which there are not much external difficulties to fear. This, however, you have to fear: that you may not be living out your spirit well enough. This is the real trouble: that we ourselves are not yet good enough.
Do not yield to the temptation of gazing at your neighbor's garden...of admiring the fruits of others. Yours is the most beautiful garden! In this garden your Beloved1 awaits you; may you know how to find him and speak with him in tender familiarity.
Yours is the most beautiful vocation! Do not make useless comparisons.
The Pious Disciple must pray for the vocations of every Institute, for the holiness of all Priests. She is likened to the heart that has to provide the blood that brings life to all the parts of the body.
Know that the Lord has called and continues to call many young boys and girls. Help them: Rogate Dominum messis.. (Pray the Lord of the harvest...). May all those who are called respond, may there be an increase of grace and that grace may find fidelity. This prayer is pleasing to the Divine Master. There are three principal evangelical counsels, but this is also very important. Rogate Dominum messis ut mittat operarios in messem suam1 (Pray the Lord of the harvest to send labourers to his harvest). Join the prayer of the Most Holy Virgin and say to her: You who are powerful, pray with us, so that the Lord will send good labourers to his harvest.
1. Are you good Disciples? In order to be good Disciples, it is necessary to have a great deal of piety, but also a lot of intelligence, much wisdom and will.
Your apostolate is simple but it is also difficult and not everybody understands it as one ought to. Keep pressing forward, keep growing, aim for the heights, keep on moving ahead more and more, and like the Divine Master, grow in age, in wisdom and in grace!1 Increase in number, knowledge, ability and holiness. Grow in the knowledge of your vocation, come to understand your kind of life and live it as true Pious Disciples.
2. It is necessary to work well for vocations.
You are the ones who form the Institute; tomorrow, in a hundred years, the Congregation shall be as how you prepare it now, you being the first.
Well then, be like the bees that sip the nectar from every flower. May you know how to obtain and form that which is beautiful and good everywhere.
Be united. Search for and find vocations who are good, intelligent, in good health, endowed with the best character traits, sociable, capable of understanding and living the greatness of your vocation.
I confirm all that Fr. Giaccardo1 told you and taught you. Hold fast to his valuable teachings.
Let us be united in these intentions:
- To live really the life of the Pious Disciple of the Divine Master as Our Lady, in union with her and in her spirit.
- To bring up and form vocations.
- To have a beautiful house of formation soon, where Jesus shall find his delight with you and where you may live more and more united with Him, in the spirit of Mary, the first Pious Disciple of the Divine Master.
1 St Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows (1838-1862).
1 Is. 45, 8.
1 Cf. Song, 4, 12.
1 Lk. 10, 2.
1 Cf. Lk. 2, 52.
1 Confirms the specific task entrusted to Blessed Timothy Giaccardo.