Blessed James Alberione

Opera Omnia


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Academic texts, too, form part of the printing apostolate! The reason is obvious: study has to lead to a search for and a discovery of God. This may be made either directly, through religious studies, or indirectly through secular studies.
The apostle's involvement in academic texts means that he has, almost always, to deal with leaders, that is, with those who have to train the masses. To devote oneself to leaders is a wise thing; the Divine Teacher's example shows us this. He was a trainer of leaders.

The type of texts
The apostle can deal with all academic texts and all sacred and secular studies for students and teachers of all ages and
levels. Still, he must always adhere to one or the other - if not both - of the following: to shield people from texts which do not conform to the salutary principles of Catholic faith and morals, and to raise people's minds to God through knowledge.
It is sometimes necessary to remove texts that do not conform to religious principles. It is known in fact that in some countries the educated class is averse to the Church because of a lack of Christian education. Many individuals have come to moral and intellectual ruin through study texts. Many errors and heresies that have caused turmoil in people and society, as well as the bewilderment and confusion that many children, young people and even adults often experience, have their distant origins in a text book or in something they learnt in school.
To raise people's minds to God through study should not be difficult for the apostle writer. His motive flows not from the lure of fame or money but from an abundance of charity.

Necessary qualities
The academic texts that the apostle prepares should be the best so that they assert their authority over adverse, anti-Catholic, non-Catholic or neutral texts.
To achieve this such texts must have certain qualities. These may be summed up as
spiritual value, literary propriety, and instructional effectiveness.
Spiritual value: that is, the power to exert influence over the spiritual faculties of those who adopt such texts, so as to aid them as much as possible in the field of knowledge and religion.
Literary propriety: the texts are to conform to the foremost rules of science and the arts, in keeping with the governmental programs of time and place, unless reasons of faith or morals should prevent this.
Instructional effectiveness: here the aim is to train people to be upright citizens and Christians in the manner that the time, the place and the circumstance demand.

Practical norms
The aim of the three qualities set out above is to achieve what must be the underlying concept in every text, which is to raise the mind to God through science and nature. This will be effected in ways that are diverse and masterful.
Diverse, that is, to adapt oneself to the particular branch of science. One thing is the teaching to be drawn from the physical sciences (general and particular), another thing is the teaching from mathematics (pure and applied), quite another the teaching from the philosophies (logical, metaphysical, aesthetic, moral, historical).
Masterful, that is, to allude to [and raise the mind to God] without annoying or exasperating people but in a manner that is pleasant, attractive, convincing and fascinating.