Blessed James Alberione

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To tell the truth he was not used to taking notes, since he did not know what to say about many things; experiencing both repugnance at doing this and humiliation on all sides; he would more willingly leave everything in God’s hands, knowing that He will reveal all at the Last Judgment, for his glory.
Youth: vocations
During his summer vacations (from 1909 to 1918), he used to make his annual retreat at one religious Institute or another. In his free time he sought to approach Superiors to learn the line they took in the recruitment and formation of people. He noted the need to choose youngsters, instead of adults already trained elsewhere and for other ministries.
What is set out in the Constitutions is a real investment (art. 21, 178):1 [that is] the custom of usually accepting young aspirants. The life experienced over a period of years, before profession, prepares the young person to make his decision with full understanding.
Pauline life has not, in truth, many external mortifications, but it does require a series of ongoing sacrifices. The various apostolates in fact entail hard work. This requires becoming accustomed to sacrifice and generous dedication.
God’s predilection: the Brother Disciples
At that time2 he became more deeply aware of Saint Basil, Saint Benedict, Saint Francis of Assisi and Saint John Baptist [de] La Salle,3 who had very many male lay member vocations. Thus the Lord has spread throughout the world many generous souls, whom he calls to himself and to perfection, side by side with the priesthood. Who will come to their aid and open the door for them and guide them toward a special holiness? Will it be possible to transform these young people, sons of God’s predilection, into gardens of lilies, roses and violets?4
Moreover, why can they not be associated with an apostolate? Just as the time came for Institutes, when the religious priest found the door open to works of zeal and the care of souls, so today we need to give to the lay Brother a share in this priestly zeal, to give him a quasi-priesthood!
The priest who writes and the Brother who does the technical work of reproducing it over and over and distributing it. This sounds right: Vos autem gens sancta, regale sacerdotium!5 Priest and Brother, intimately linked in the religious life and united in the same apostolate, [collaborating] to prepare their heavenly crown together.
Here then the Brothers!6 The priest’s preaching with modern means is freed from dependence on ordinary workers and is replicated indefinitely. The work of the Brother uplifts his activity, makes it joyful and increases it. God is glorified, the Gospel is proclaimed and people are enlightened.
The way God acts
Providence worked in accordance with God’s ordinary method: fortiter et suaviter.7 [This method is] to prepare the ways and bring them together according to His purpose, to provide the light and help needed, to make one wait in peace until His time comes, to begin always from the bare necessities, to act in such a natural way as to be unable to easily distinguish grace from nature, but, certainly, [employing] both.
Conversely, it is not the case to force God’s hand. It suffices to be on the alert, to let oneself be guided, and to strive in one’s various duties to employ mind, will, heart and physical strength…
The actions of a human being are so imperfect, unsound, inadequate and dubious that one is dutybound to put everything back into the hands of God’s Mercy and to allow oneself to be guided. He never forced the hand of Providence but always awaited God’s sign.
He started to pray for the Pastorelle Sisters in 1908, but this Congregation came into being only thirty years later.8
It happened at times that there was a need for a serene and calm maturing of the things to be done. The Lord arranged for [him to spend] a few days in bed. After confining himself to his room for a day or two, he would come out refreshed. He submitted his plans to his Spiritual Director (who corrected and added, as needed) and, if required, to Church authority, and then set to work. The time was not always ripe; but the Lord made things known, leaving the work and the errors… to his servant. Then the Lord intervened to redress the errors and mistakes and take over the work himself.9
The serious upheaval and Romanità
The institution came into being in 191410 in the midst of serious upheaval. At the end of July, he had just committed himself to buy the printing plant when the initial declaration of war came. A worldwide catastrophe followed.11 Franz Josef12 had not taken up Pius X’s13 invitation and plea for peace.
Two currents within the clergy had lasted until 1900:14 one faithful to the directives of the Holy See; the other steeped in the liberalism of Mazzini, Cavour, Minghetti…15
One current still held fast to the old ways of life and pastoral care, and failed to respond to the new needs. The other current was troubled by the progress of Socialism and convinced of the need to shake off the yoke of the power of Freemasonry, by employing up to date systems, organization and action. As so easily happens, some people overrated action and undervalued prayer, with the consequent condemnation of Americanism.16
Afterwards, pastoral action took a direction that was in conformity with the example and activity of Pius X by following constructive methods. Pius X appeared and presented himself in a fascinating light: Jesus Christ anew, visible among the crowds.
For a period of time there was nothing positive in knowledge unless it came out of France; later on, everyone turned to German scholars.17
Because of the rapid spread of Modernism there was serious upheaval and disorientation:18 in literature, in art, in Church discipline, in journalism, theology, philosophy, history, Scripture... Many, especially among the young clergy, went astray. The vigilant and resolute action of Pius X enlightened people of good will and brought them back.
Another point: the new discoveries had revolutionized many things.
From the viewpoint of society the whole system of the creation, distribution and consumption of wealth was in serious upheaval. The principles of liberalism inherited from the French Revolution had exacerbated these matters.19 As a reaction Socialism spread far and wide, which resulted in materialism and class struggle. Leo XIII had set out the remedies in a number of encyclicals;20 he was insisting especially on true Christian democracy.21 This, too, led to new divisions within the clergy:22 a headlong rush by many to set their sights on material well-being without sufficient foresight; and a marked resistance to the directives of the Holy See.23
In politics, at the time, it was becoming a matter of conscience24 for people caught between the non expedit25 and the belief of many who felt the need (as Pius X later expressed it) to safeguard the supreme good of souls and of the nation. Here, too, [there were] divisions, discussions and quite different points of view.
New ways of conveying ideas were already on the scene. Increasingly powerful organizations were backing the press; motion pictures, at first regarded with suspicion, were taking on greater relevance; the school was becoming the arena where non-believers and Catholics contended for souls; radio and television would soon arrive fully developed.
Hence a flow of documents on the part of the Holy See summoning Catholics to rise to meet the new challenges. While it was evident that there were many apathetic and insensitive people, [there were also] informed Catholics and clergy working in accordance with the papal directives.26
These issues and [these] experiences, meditated on before the Blessed Sacrament, developed his belief [that there must be] Romanità, always, only and in all things. Everything had served as a learning experience and offered guidance.
There is no security outside of Romanità. There is no need of further proof to show that the Pope is the great beacon lit by Christ for humanity and for every age. The first members made a fourth vow, [of] obedience to the Pope as regards the apostolate, [apostolate] placed at the service of the Vicar of Jesus Christ.27
Social spirit
Providence arranged28 a lengthy preparation for this. [There was] the work undertaken for the Catholic University of Milan (1905-1906) to collect contributions for the promotion Committee to found it.29
Courses of social conferences and social studies during his Theology years and, later on, conferences of a social nature that he took part in at the request of his superiors, his cooperation in social organizations and works,30 and contacts with Catholic Action people such as Cardinal Maffi,31 Professor Toniolo, Count Paganuzzi and the accountant Rezzara.
The time following the dissolution of the Opera dei Congressi32 required greater commitment. Pius X replaced it with the Unione Popolare among Catholics,33 similar to the line taken in Germany. There were serious reasons for doing so but in general it was not well received. There was a need to work on many good yet disheartened people, and many stubborn adversaries.
A lot was written in the Gazzetta d’Alba.34 From 1911 to 1914 we had to visit most of the parishes in the diocese to establish [the Union], to give talks and to dispel difficulties. We were almost alone: two persons guided by the Bishop.35
When Pius X, an excellent judge of the times and a person guided by God, mitigated the non expedit,36 [he] worked chiefly for the election of candidates supported by Catholics – for several years and with good results. Such results culminated in the elections in which the Partito Popolare37 effected a remarkable achievement and formed a bloc in the Chamber which was a strong defense against Freemasonry38 and Socialism up to the time of Fascism.39
Action and prayer pointed the way toward Christian social work geared to revitalize government, education, laws, the family, and class and international relations. All for Christ Way, Truth and Life to reign in the world! Here the Pauline Family has a huge undertaking and responsibility.
Saint Paul
: the saint of universality. [His] admiration and devotion began chiefly with the study of the Letter to the Romans and meditation on it. From then on, [Paul’s] personality, his holiness, his heart, his intimacy with Jesus, his contribution to dogmatic and moral teaching, his impact on Church organization and his zeal for all peoples – all became topics for meditation. [Paul] came across to him indeed as the Apostle, and thus every apostle and every apostolate could draw from Him.
The Family was consecrated to Saint Paul.40 The cure of P.M.41 too is to be attributed to Saint Paul.
The Pauline Family has an enormous opening onto the whole world, and in its whole apostolate: studies, apostolate, piety, activities and production. Publications for all categories of people, as well as all matters and events [are to be] judged in the light of the Gospel; its aspirations are those of the Heart of Jesus in the Mass; [all this] in the one apostolate to make Jesus Christ known [cf. Jn 17:3], to enlighten and to support every apostolate and good work, to take all peoples to its heart; to make the Church’s presence felt in every issue: a spirit of adaptation and understanding for all public and private needs, [for] the whole of worship, [for] law and the intermarriage of justice and charity.
For five years, twice a day, he read a passage from Rohrbacher’s42 History of the Church and for a further five years, Hergenröther’s version.43 For eight years, in his free time, he read Cantù’s44 World History before moving on to the History of World Literature, Art, War, Navigation, Music in particular, Law, Religions and Philosophy.
His role as librarian in the Seminary helped him a great deal. The library had quite a stock of older works, but very little that was new. However, people made money available to stock many [new works] and, over time, to acquire all the best magazines [as well as] encyclopedias and dictionaries of Catholic sciences. His reading of the Civiltà Cattolica,45 from 1906 up to the present, and then L’Osservatore Romano, the Atti della Santa Sede and encyclicals (from Leo XIII onwards) were continual nourishment.
From Canon Chiesa he had learned to transform everything into a theme of meditation and prayer before the Divine Master – a prayer of adoration, thanksgiving, atonement, and supplication.
Toward graded order in our publications: first, to serve the clergy, children, youth, the masses and those who exert greater influence over them, such as teachers; then the missions, social questions, the intellectuals, etc.
Publications with a Pauline spirit, as portrayed by Saint Paul. After stating the essential: to live in Christ [cf. 2 Tim 3:12], he adds, to the Philippians: De cetero, Fratres, quæcumque sunt vera, quæcumque pudica, quæcumque iusta, quæcumque sancta, quæcumque amabilia, quæcumque bonæ famæ, si qua virtus, si qua laus disciplinæ, hæc cogitate. Quæ didicistis et accepistis, et audistis et vidistis in me, hæc cogitate: et Deus pacis erit vobiscum(Phil 4:7.8.9).46
The liturgical spirit
The reading of works by Guglielmo Durando, Gavanti, Barin, Destefani, Guéranger, Caronti, Schuster, Veneroni, Eisenhofer and Lefèbvre [was] of great benefit to him;47 as likewise were the reviews Ephemerides Liturgicæ48 and Rivista liturgica (Finalpia).49 Pius X’s work, as regards sacred chant,50 the breviary and the teaching of liturgy, impressed him very much.
He had to give liturgy classes for a number of years. Then when he became master of ceremonies and sacristan in the seminary, and the Bishop’s master of ceremonies with the task of preparing the ceremonial book, he enjoyed even better the prayer of the Church and [praying] with the Church.
Those duties led to the desire to have churches [that were] suitable for the wonderful ceremonies of the liturgy. One day the bishop confided: Once I preferred to preach dogma; then I preferred moral teaching; now I feel it is more useful to explain the prayers of the liturgy and their link with dogmatic and moral teaching. It was for him a directive.
As a result:
In the Pauline Family Gregorian chant and sacred music were held in high esteem; a missal for the people begun early on51 was prepared in the [printing] school; then [came] the [parish] liturgical bulletin,52 La vita in Cristo e nella Chiesa, and the Pious Disciples53 with [their] liturgical purpose. All this came about through reflection on the liturgy in its full and authentic meaning.
The Divine Master dwells in the Blessed Sacrament in 150 chapels of the Pauline Family.54
Three main churches
[have been built] to the Divine Master,55 to the Queen of Apostles56 and to Saint Paul,57 in keeping with our three main devotions.58
He was entrusted with teaching Sacred Art. Therefore [he pursued this by] reading up on the subject, examining works of art, and [following] discussions in magazines on the subject of Art for life, for truth and for the good.59
Early on he enrolled as a member in the society of Friends of Christian Art.60
The building of the three churches followed the principles published several years beforehand in his Appunti di Teologia pastorale.61
He gave a sketch of each one to the Architect in order to develop the project, along with a general plan of the work, so that the church would have unity and would develop of the theme in all its parts: architecture, sculpture, paintings, windows and furnishings. Above all [so that] it would reflect the purpose for which a Pauline church is built.
Grace was always a factor both externally and internally. As a seminarian he was a catechist for six years in the Cathedral and in the parish of Saints Cosmas and Damian. Earlier the Brothers of the Christian Schools (then in Alba) introduced him to the study of pedagogy; then (1910-14) he studied catechetical methods: how to organize catechetics in the parish, and the spiritual, intellectual and pedagogic formation of the catechists. For three years [he supervised] catechetical work in the boys’ oratory, taught religion classes for students in state secondary schools, took part in catechetical conferences, and so on. All these steps were provided for by a kind and loving Providence which, in spite of our wretchedness and lack of response, attingit a fine usque ad finem fortiter suaviterque disponens omnia [cf. Wis 8:1].62
Acts of the Holy See on the catechism, good catechetical texts, the effort to train catechists, catechetical film slides, wall posters and catechetical equipment: all had proved useful in God’s hands.
He made a study and particular apostolate of the catechism, especially when the Bishop appointed him to the diocesan catechetical commission, composed of three priests, to draw up the diocesan catechetical class texts and programs.
Catechetical work was always regarded as the first and basic [undertaking]: Go, preach, and teach [Mt 28:19; Mk 16:15].63 Now, in Italy and overseas, the catechetical work of the Pauline Family is becoming more and more broad-based and focused.
Pastoral spirit
This treasure, [given] to the Pauline Family, matured and arrived like the others: through the action and light of Jesus in the Eucharist plus the assignments given to him and carried out in obedience. He undertook pastoral ministry in three parishes in particular;64 in many others he was involved in preaching, confessions, talks and Catholic activities.65 He had a variety of contacts and experiences regarding both people and ministries. He felt ever more keenly [the words]: Go, preach, teach, and baptize.66 It was then that he thought of training women helpers for priests: the Pastorelle Sisters (1908).67
Over a two-year period, in weekly conferences with a dozen priests, he studied methods for the good and up-to-date care of souls. He asked questions and received written suggestions from about fifteen Vicars Forane. (These he shared with the student clerics and young priests.) The outcome was his (1913) book Appunti di Teologia pastorale.68 In the Foreword69 Cardinal Richelmy mentions that [the work] outlines the means best suited to the present time.
For the pastoral characteristic in the Pauline apostolate, he took a great deal from two great teachers: Swoboda, Cura d’anime nelle grandi città70 and Krieg’s four-volume Teologia pastorale,71 which he read over and over for two years.
He placed his ministry under the protection of Mary, Queen of Apostles, and he taught the student clerics and young priests to do the same.
He insisted on catechesis and on oral preaching and on having ready at hand the written word of God (school of eloquence 1912-1915); keeping in mind all sections of the populace and especially the masses.
Salt, light, city: the Christian animation of culture
You are salt, you are light, you are a city set on a hill… with respect to the world. This is the thought of the Divine Master [cf. Mt 5:13-14].
First of all, give the teaching that saves. Imbue all thought and human knowledge with the Gospel. Don’t talk only about religion but talk about everything in a Christian way; in a way similar to a Catholic university which, if it is complete, has Theology, Philosophy, Arts, Medicine, Political Economics, Natural Sciences, and so on, but everything [is] given in a Christian way and in view of Catholicism.
Likewise Sociology, Pedagogy, Geology, Statistics, Art, Hygiene, Geography, History, all human advancement, and so on, in accordance with reason subordinate to faith: [this is what] the Pauline Family must give.72
From 1895 to 1915 there had been so many deviations73 in social, theological and ascetical matters as to undermine the foundations of every truth and of the Church; indeed, to bring about its downfall. Il Santo by Fogazzaro74 was a striking example; failure to praise it was regarded by most people as being backward, but then it was condemned.
He learned a great deal from everything. The first concern in the Pauline Family is to be holiness of life, and the second [is to be] holiness of doctrine.
For four months, in 1904, he organized a seminar on Saint Thomas Aquinas. [He had to] assign the topics and show the clerics how to develop them. The general topic was the Thomistic basis of thought in the midst of the chaos of ideas.
His commemorative talk concerned the twenty-fifth anniversary of the encyclical Æterni Patris on Philosophy.75
From this he derived spiritual benefit and guidance. There is no sanctity without truth or, at least, love of the truth; sanctity of the mind is the initial step. [There is] no sense of direction without Logic; no breadth of vision without Metaphysics; no sure way except in the Church.
Pauline spirit
The Pauline Family strives to fully live the Gospel of Jesus Christ, Way, Truth and Life, in the spirit of Saint Paul, under the gaze of the Queen of Apostles.
There are not many details in [the Pauline Family], or unusual devotions, or excessive formalities. The aim is to live in Christ the Master and in the Church. The spirit of Saint Paul is drawn from his life, his Letters and his apostolate. He is always alive in the Church’s dogmatic and moral teaching, in her worship and in her organization.76
A secret of success is to model oneself on God by living in Christ. Thus the notion of living and working in the Church and for the Church; of being wild olives grafted onto the living olive,77 the eucharistic Lord; of reflecting on and nourishing oneself with every word of the Gospel, in accord with the spirit of Saint Paul – [is] always to be crystal-clear.
Thus, fundamental articles of the Constitutions78 are:
154 Piety must be particularly and continually fostered by the study of Jesus Christ the Divine Master, Who is the Way, the Truth and the Life. This is to be done in such a manner that, after His example, all may grow in wisdom, grace and virtue, worshipping God in spirit and in truth, and sincerely loving Him with mind, will, heart, and deed.
177 Care shall be taken that in learning, as well as in teaching, studies be always directed and cultivated in such a way that Jesus Christ, Our Divine Master, Who is the Way, the Truth and the Life, be ever more known and understood by us, and that Christ be more completely formed in our mind, will and heart. Thus we shall become skillful masters of souls, because we have been, first, humble and diligent disciples of Christ.
224 The principles our editions should convey are those which view faith, morals and worship as drawn from the pure sources of Sacred Scripture, Tradition, and the teaching of the Church.
The whole person in Jesus Christ, in view of loving God completely [by means of one’s] intelligence, will, heart and physical strength. Nature, grace and vocation: everything [is] for the apostolate. [It is] a cart that runs on the four wheels of sanctity, study, apostolate and poverty.79

1 Constitutions of the Pious Society of Saint Paul, Rome 1950:Art. 21: “Since it is the Society’s intention to train its own members as set out in article 178, as a rule aspirants must not be admitted who have already received Orders, remaining in force what is prescribed in articles 18.8 and 19.1.”
Art. 178: “The Society is to prepare its future members from a very young age in its houses of study, in which the aspirants are educated with every care in view of their vocation. Thus the Society must have its own houses for classical studies or high school.”

2 It is difficult to determine this time frame. It could refer to the time when the Author made his annual retreat at one religious Institute or another, from 1909 to 1918 (cf. AD 36). Still, we should not exclude the time during the early years of his priestly life (1907-1910), or even during his work in the boys’ oratory, when the Author “had to study catechetical methods” (cf. AD 78), that is, from 1910 to 1914.

3 All are well known holy Founders: Saint Basil (circa 330-379), Saint Benedict (480-547), Saint Francis of Assisi (1181/2-1226), Saint Ignatius of Loyola (1491-1556) and Saint John Baptist de La Salle (1651-1719), who was the founder of the Brothers of the Christian Schools.

4 Lilies, roses, violets...: symbolic flowers of gospel virtues, called to mind each day in the community prayers. Cf. the “Invocations”: “O Mary, bring to flower in this House lilies of purity…; roses of charity…; violets of humilty…” (Prayers of the Society of Saint Paul, 1922, p. 6).

5 “But you are... a holy nation, a royal priesthood.” The textual reading is: “Vos autem genus electum, regale sacerdotium, gens sancta...” (1 Pet 2:9).

6 Cf. Constitutions, cit., art. 6: “The Pious Society of Saint Paul consists of Clerical and Lay members, who, although distinct by divine institution but conjoined in the unity of the same Society, must tend to the same end, according to their respective vocation, aptitudes and condition. The Lay-Brothers are called by a name proper to them – Disciples.”

7 “Mightily and sweetly” (cf. Wis 8:1).

8 The Pastorelle Sisters, or more correctly the Sisters of Jesus the Good Shepherd, date their beginning to 1936. In actual fact, it was only on 7.10.1938 that they opened their first house in Genzano (Rome) in the diocese of Albano Laziale.

9 “And take over the work himself”: handwritten addition.

10 Fr Alberione laid the foundations of the future Pious Society of Saint Paul on 14 July when he presented Bishop Giuseppe F. Re with an outline of his foundation plan. On 20 July the Bishop gave his verbal and informal approval. On 24 July he rented portion of Vittoria Degiacomi’s house in Piazza Cherasca, Alba. On 26 July he acquired the first printing machines. On the days following he welcomed the first boys. With a brief religious ceremony, 20 August 1914 was consecrated as the foundation day. It was the feast of Saint Bernard of Clairvaux and the date of Pius X’s death.

11 As a follow-up to the Sarajevo incident (the assassination of the Archduke of Hapsburg and his wife), Austria declared war on Serbia on 28.7.1914. Germany and Russia entered the conflict immediately, on opposing sides, followed by the other nations of Europe.

12 Franz Josef, Emperor of Austria (1830-1916).

13 Giuseppe Melchiorre Sarto, born in Riese (Treviso) on 2.6.1835, was elected Pope on 4.8.1903 and took the name Pius X. He died on 20.8.1914 and was canonized on 29.5.1954.

14 See below, AD 50-55.

15 Italian political figures and key players in Italy’s “Risorgimento”: Giuseppe Mazzini (1805-1872), Count Camillo Benso of Cavour (1810-1861) and Marco Minghetti (1818-1886).

16 Cf. LEO XIII, Letter Testem benevolentiæ to the Archbishop of Baltimore, 22.1.1899.

17 On a handwritten sheet of paper are the following words of the Author, which could be the first rough written draft of paragraphs 48-62: “Following on Leo XIII, a great builder, came the Pontiff of practical matters…” (cf AD 50, 60-62).
“The discoveries that revolutionized production. The cinema, radio, and television were in their early stages or just coming on the scene, while organization, the press and education were the real powers introduced into the Constitutions or being developed into ways of life” (cf. AD 54).
“Riches arising from the circumstances…” (cf. AD 48).
“Clergy faithful to the directives of the Holy See and quite a few priests steeped in liberalism… Clergy still stuck in pastoral methods and impatient to use up-to-date systems, associations and action […] pastoral action was undergoing a remarkable rejuvenation and, as happens in such cases, some were too enthusiastic for action, without prayer, and so the condemnation of Americanism, while others were faithful to the right ways” (cf. AD 49).
“Modernism resulted in a serious upheaval in reasoning, in the press, in life and [...] in people’s minds. It planted deep roots in the young clergy and among the student clerics” (cf. AD 51).

18 A vast philosophical and theological movement at the beginning of the 20th century, Modernism was condemned by the Holy Office with the Decree Lamentabili, dated 3.7.1907, and by Pius X with the encyclical Pascendi dominici gregis, dated 8.9.1907. Bearing in mind that Fr Alberione was ordained priest on 29.6.1907, we can easily imagine the influence this condemnation had on him and on his apostolic projects.

19 What is meant here is that the principles of liberalism had aggravated the damage being caused to the economic system; as a reaction, economic liberalism (or “capitalism”) led to Socialism, or Communism.

20 Notable is the 1891 encyclical Rerum Novarum on social issues.

21 Cf. LEO XIII, encyclical Graves de communi re, 18.1.1901.

22 Two priests in particular who were involved in this political commitment were Romolo Murri (1870-1944) and Luigi Sturzo (1871-1959). The first was condemned as a Modernist, the second remained unscathed. Both are considered the fathers of Christian Democracy in Italy.

23 Exponents of the pro-socialist extremist wing were Ernesto Buonaiuti (1881-1946) and other priests of the so-called “Roman radical group”.

24 On this issue, cf. Domenico MASSÈ, Il caso di coscienza del Risorgimento italiano dalle origini alla Conciliazione, Società Apostolato Stampa, Alba 1946.

25 The “Non expedit (=it is not opportune) was the ban placed on Italian Catholics by Pius IX on 13.10.1874. It prohibited them from taking part in political life, either as candidates or as voters. It was the outcome of the abuse of power by the government of Italy against the Papal States, with the occupation of Rome (20.9.1870).

26 Regarding these “papal directives”, cf. Documenti pontifici sulla stampa (1878-1963), Tip. Poliglotta Vaticana, s.d.; Documenti pontifici sulla radio e sulla televisione (1929-1962), Tip. Poliglotta Vaticana, s.d.; E. BARAGLI S.J., Cinema cattolico: documenti della Santa Sede sul cinema, Città Nuova, Rome 1965.

27 The Author added this last sentence by hand in the ds.

28 Thus (dispose) in the ms. In the ds instead the verb is in the present tense (dispone), but we believe this is a typing error.

29 Officially founded on 7.12.1921, the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Milan received juridical recognition from the State of Italy on 2.10.1924.

30 Regarding these matters, consult G. BARBERO, cit., pp. 184-194.

31 Cardinal Pietro Maffi (1858-1931), Archbishop of Pisa, was a great admirer and counsellor of Fr Alberione. – For Toniolo and Paganuzzi, cf. above (AD 14 and 20). Niccolò Rezzara (1848-1915) was a well-known Catholic organizer.

32 The Opera dei Congressi e dei Comitati Cattolici in Italia was the main organization for Italian Catholics committed to social work. Begun in 1874, it was dissolved by Pius X on 30.7.1904.

33 The Unione Popolare was an association formed in Italy following the dissolution of the Opera dei Congressi. The aim was to bring Catholics together from all classes of society and have a sole center of social teaching, promotion and organization. Cf. the letter Il fermo proposito, of Pius X, of the 11.6.1905. – In Germany the People’s Union was called the “Volksverein” (cf. AD 17, note 13).

34 Cf. A. DAMINO, Bibliografia di Don Giacomo Alberione, Edizioni dell’Archivio Storico Generale della Famiglia Paolina, Rome 1994

3 , p. 187: “In actual fact [starting from the issues of 1911] the articles concerning the Unione Popolare abound, but not one of them bears any author’s name; thus the phrase “was written” remains vague. Nonetheless, it is likely that the majority of these articles came from the pen of [Canon] Francesco Chiesa, president of the Union’s diocesan branch. In the stormy period following the war, the combative and polemical Gazzetta took a resolute stance in defense of religious values and in favor of the Partito Popolare. Certain articles in italic, some lively filler items and a number of short editorials have to be those of the Editor, that is, Fr Alberione, although his signature never appears.”

35 The two persons were Canon Chiesa and Fr Alberione. The former wrote a pamphlet entitled L’Unione Popolare spiegata ai contadini, printed by the Tipografia Albese (formerly Paganelli) in 1908 and distributed at 10 centesimi a copy. A second edition of this pamphlet was published in 1912. For further information on Fr Alberione’s work in the diocese in favor of the Unione Popolare, cf. the periodical La Settimana Sociale. (Publication of this periodical began in Florence on 19.1.1908.) On page five of the 25.11.1911 issue there is a long list of towns in the Alba region where the two theologians, Chiesa and Alberione, gave talks on the Unione Popolare. The text of these talks is not quoted but one can assume that the basic themes came from the abovementioned pamphlet of Canon Francesco Chiesa.

36 With the abovementioned 1905 encyclical, Il fermo proposito, Pius X authorized the Bishops of Italy to grant exemptions from the “Non expedit” and to allow Catholics to take part in political life. Thus the first Catholics candidates emerged. There was no question yet of having Catholic deputies because at this stage no one wanted a Catholic political party.

37 The Partito Popolare Italiano was founded in Rome by a group led by the already mentioned Fr Luigi Sturzo (1871-1959), by means of an undersigned “Appeal to the Nation” on 18.1.1919.

38 James Alberione’s negative judgment regarding Freemasonry, as a seminarian and as a priest, can be traced back to the 20.4.1884 encyclical Humanum genus of LEO XIII, and to the 10.5.1884 instruction of the Holy Office Ad gravissima avertenda. – Cf. R. F. ESPOSITO, La Massoneria e l’Italia dal 1800 ai nostri giorni, Edizioni Paoline, Rome 1969.

39 Political movement, founded in Milan by Benito Mussolini (1883-1945) in March of 1919. In 1922 the Partito Nazionale Fascista became the only party.

40 Two Congregations of the Pauline Family – the Society of Saint Paul and the Pious Society Daughters of Saint Paul – have Saint Paul as their special patron. Their spirituality is based on the Letters of Saint Paul and on his apostolic life as it appears in the Acts of the Apostles. The other Institutes of the Pauline Family also share the spirit of Saint Paul and practice devotion to him.

41 P.M. = Primo Maestro. “Abbot Mauro Serafini O.S.B. (1859-1925) Secretary (from 1918) of the Sacred Congregation of Religious, had suggested the term ‘Maestro’ as a personal title of the Superior General of the soon to be erected Pious Society of Saint Paul. As a matter of fact, in the decree of Bishop Giuseppe Francesco Re, of 12 March 1927, we find the title ‘Primo Maestro’ of the Pious Society of Saint Paul used in reference to the Founder of the same. The title ‘Primo Maestro’ later became customary and replaced that of ‘Signor Teologo’ ” (cf. G. BARBERO, “Nel XIX Centenario del martirio di S. Paolo: Il Sacerdote Giacomo Alberione e gli Istituti Paolini”, in Palestra del Clero, 46 [1967] 246-261). Later on (28.7.1929), the Founder himself invited the members of the Pauline Family to call him “Primo Maestro”. – The “cure” alluded to here by the Founder happened in 1923.

42 It was during 1842 and up to 1849 that René-François ROHRBACHER (1789-1856) published at Nancy his wide-ranging 29-volume Histoire de l’Eglise catholique. It was then continued by Chantrel and Chamard. His work was published in Italy in 1876 and was then continued by P. Balan and C. Bonacina up to and including the time of Leo XIII.

43 Joseph HERGENRÖTHER (1824-1890), who was created a cardinal in 1879, published his important Handbuch der allgemeinen Kirchengeschichte at Würzburg in 1876-80. It was translated into Italian by E. Rosa and published at Florence in 1907-11.

44 Cesare CANTÙ (1804-1895), historian, man of letters, patriot and politician, published his 35-volume Storia universale, in 1883-91.

45 The Civiltà Cattolica is the well-known review of the Jesuits in Italy. It began on 6.4.1850 and is published every two weeks. L’Osservatore Romano, a political and religious daily newspaper which began on 1.7.1861, is the unofficial newspaper of the Holy See. The “Atti della S. Sede” are probably the Acta Sanctæ Sedis. In 1909 these became the Acta Apostolicæ Sedis, Commentarium officiale, which are still published as the official organ of the Holy See.

46 “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received, and heard and seen in me, do; and the God of peace will be with you.” The precise quotation is Phil 4:8-9. In v. 9, Fr Alberione, perhaps quoting from memory, changes some words. The exact reading is: “Quæ et didicistis et accepistis et audistis et vidistis in me, hæc agite.…

47 Guglielmo Durando (1230c-1296) canon lawyer and liturgist was Bishop of Mende. The following were also liturgists: Bartolomeo Gavanti (1569-1638), Luigi Rodolfo Barin (1883-1933), Gaspare Destefani (1884-1952), Prospère Guéranger (1805-1875), Emanuele Caronti (1882-1966), Alfredo Ildefonso Schuster (1880-1954, now Blessed), Pietro Veneroni (1862-1935), Ludwig Eisenhofer (1871-1941) and Gaspare Lefèbvre (1880-1966).

48 The Ephemerides Liturgicæ, a liturgical review, was started in Rome by Calcedonio Mancini in 1887.

49 The Rivista Liturgica was published and edited by the Benedictines of the monastery of Praglia (Teolo, province of Padua) and the monastery of Finalpia (Finale Ligure, province of Savona). Emanuele Caronti started the review in 1914. Its purpose was to popularize the liturgy in a sound way; later it became the official organ of the liturgical movement in Italy.

50 Cf. PIUS X, motu proprio Tra le sollecitudini, of 22.11.1903.

51 The first missal for the people, with the Latin text and a translation in Italian, was published at Alba (Cuneo) in 1935. It was edited by four Paulines: A.G. Colasanto, G.B. Chiesa, A.B. Nosetti and A.B. Segato.

52 The Bollettino Parrocchiale Liturgico was begun in 1932.

53 The Pious Disciples of the Divine Master are the second Congregation for women founded by Fr Alberione. Living the liturgy and bringing the liturgy to life is one of their primary apostolates. In 1952 they began publishing the monthly liturgical magazine La vita in Cristo e nella Chiesa for those engaged in pastoral work.

54 This obviously refers to the number of chapels in esistence at the end of 1953.

55 This church, which was planned in 1915 when Fr Alberione had links with Fr Giuseppe Rosa (1875-1929), was actually built twenty years later in Alba’s Borgo Piave, where the Daughters of Saint Paul built the house that they regard as their Mother House. Bishop Luigi Maria Grassi of Alba blessed the church on 25.10.1936. Later it became a parish church. Fr Alberione built another imposing church to Jesus the Divine Master in Rome’s Via Portuense.

56 This church in Rome is at the center of the Pauline buildings bounded by the present streets of Alessandro Severo and Antonino Pio. The outcome of a vow made to the Virgin Mary for her maternal protection during the 1939-1945 war, this church was built in 1945 and consecrated on 30.11.1954. A minor Basilica, this Shrine is a center of spiritual union for the members of the Pauline Family. – Cf. Storia e arte del Santuario Regina Apostolorum, by Umberto MUZZIN SSP and others, Rome 1969, and Il Santuario basilica Regina Apostolorum, by G.B. PEREGO SSP, Rome 1985.

57 The Church of Saint Paul in Alba (Cuneo), opened for worship in October 1928, is the center-piece of the buildings that make up the Mother House of the Society of Saint Paul. – Cf. Il tempio di San Paolo in Alba, Storia e arte, (ed.) G. CINAGLIA and E. FORNASARI SSP, Alba 1988.

58 Cf. Ut perfectus sit homo Dei, II, 243-244.

59 Implicit reference to the debated question regarding “Art for art’s sake” upheld by the intellectuals of the late Romantic period.

60 In 1913, in Milan, a Society called “Amici dell’Arte Cristiana” started a review entitled Arte Cristiana. Its leading light and founder was Bishop (later Cardinal) Celso Costantini (1876-1958). The magazine’s aim was to promote a love of sacred art in general and of liturgical art in particular.

61 Cf. Appunti di Teologia pastorale. First typewritten and photostat copy edition, Alba 1912. A chapter on the Building of Churches runs from page 469 to page 481 (cf. AD 83).

62 “Fills the universe and holds all things together in a strong yet gentle manner” (cf. Magnificat antiphon, Vespers, 17 December).

63 Cf. G. BARBERO, Don Giacomo Alberione catechista e compilatore di catechismi, in R.F. ESPOSITO, La Teologia della pubblicistica secondo l’insegnamento di Don Giacomo Alberione, Edizioni Paoline, Rome 1970, pp. 203-207, and also in Sussidi per la Catechesi, Jan.-Feb. 1972.

64 The parishes to which he alludes are probably those of S. Bernardo at Narzole, where Fr Alberione was a curate in 1908; S. Pietro in Vincoli at Benevello, and Ss. Cosma e Damiano in Alba. But that is not to exclude the possibility of the Cathedral (cf. AD 104ff) or the parish church of Guarene (cf. M.L. RICCI, Madre M. Scolastica Rivata, Rome 1996, p. 28).

65 Cf. G. BARBERO, “Storia della pastorale: pastorale pratica e pastorale teorica del sacerdote Giacomo Alberione (1884-1971)”, in Palestra del Clero 52 (1973) 311-317.

66 Cf. Mt 28:19; Mk 16:15.

67 The actual realization of this Congregation began only in 1936 and came into effect in 1938 (cf. AD 46 and relative note).

68 The first typewritten and photostat-copy edition of these “notes” bears the date 1 August 1912. The second edition (first printed edition) came out in Turin in 1915, printed by Pietro Marietti (cf. AD 77).

69 It is on p. VII of the second, 1915, edition that we find the words of praise and encouragement of Cardinal Agostino Richelmy (1850-1923), the Archbishop of Turin. The Cardinal’s Foreword bears the date 2.2.1913.

70 Henry SWOBODA, theologian (1861-1923). The Italian translation of his book, La Cura d’anime nelle grandi città, was published in Rome in 1912.

71 Cornelius KRIEG (1838-1911).

72 Fr Alberione attempted to implement this vast program initially in the 1930s. He engaged a group of Pauline cleric students and young priests to prepare text books for primary and secondary schools to cover the whole gamut of subjects: Literature, Sciences, History, and so on. He suggested the method and followed up its implementation. His greatest push, however, came in the 1950s with the commencement of the encyclopedia on Jesus the Master. Cf. below, AD 185-200, and CISP 1195ff.

73 Cf. AD 49f.

74 Antonio FOGAZZARO (1842-1911), novelist, published his Il Santo in 1905; the decree of condemnation is 5.4.1906. – On this topic, cf. L. CARONTI, Fogazzaro, Subiaco e “Il Santo”, Edizioni Paoline, Alba 1989.

75 Cf. LEO XIII, encyclical Æterni Patris, on the study of Saint Thomas Aquinas, dated 4.8.1879, in Acta I (1878-1879) 255ff.

76 Cf. above, AD 64.

77 Cf. Rom 11:24.

78 Constitutions of the Pious Society of Saint Paul, ed. 1950.

79 Cf. J. M. GALAVIZ H., El carro paulino, Mexico 1992. Italian translation: Il “carro” paolino, Ed. Archivio Storico Generale della F.P., Rome 1993.