In This Your Temple

In This Your Temple

Settle upon me, Lord, my Savior.
Here in this temple, ever be,
In me, about me, ever near,
More and more dear.

My Refuge, receive me,
Hide me in abandonment,
Cover me with Your mantle,
Growing Your Life in me.

© 2017 Joann Nelander

St Ignatius Loyola

Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel

We have visited the villages of the new converts who accepted the Christian religion a few years ago. No Portuguese live here—the country is so utterly barren and poor. The native Christians have no priests. They know only that they are Christians. There is nobody to say Mass for them; nobody to teach them the Creed, the Our Father, the Hail Mary and the Commandments of God’s Law.

I have not stopped since the day I arrived. I conscientiously made the rounds of the villages. I bathed in the sacred waters all the children who had not yet been baptized. This means that I have purified a very large number of children so young that, as the saying goes, they could not tell their right hand from their left. The older children would not let me say my Office or eat or sleep until I taught them one prayer or another. Then I began to understand: “The kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

I could not refuse so devout a request without failing in devotion myself. I taught them, first the confession of faith in the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, then the Apostles’ Creed, the Our Father and Hail Mary. I noticed among them persons of great intelligence. If only someone could educate them in the Christian way of life, I have no doubt that they would make excellent Christians.

Many, many people hereabouts are not becoming Christians for one reason only: there is nobody to make them Christians. Again and again I have thought of going round the universities of Europe, especially Paris, and everywhere crying out like a madman, riveting the attention of those with more learning than charity: “What a tragedy: how many souls are being shut out of heaven and falling into hell, thanks to you!”

I wish they would work as hard at this as they do at their books, and so settle their account with God for their learning and the talents entrusted to them.

This thought would certainly stir most of them to meditate on spiritual realities, to listen actively to what God is saying to them. They would forget their own desires, their human affairs, and give themselves over entirely to God’s will and his choice. They would cry out with all their heart: Lord, I am here! What do you want me to do? Send me anywhere you like—even to India.

From the book of the prophet Isaiah

From the book of the prophet Isaiah
The judgment of God
O Lord, you have abandoned your people,
the House of Jacob,
Because they are filled with fortunetellers,
and soothsayers, like the Philistines;
they covenant with strangers.
Their land is full of silver and gold,
and there is no end to their treasures;
Their land is full of horses,
and there is no end to their chariots.
Their land is full of idols;
they worship the works of their hands,
that which their fingers have made.
But man is abased,
each one brought low.
[Do not pardon them!] Get behind the rocks,
hide in the dust,
From the terror of the Lord
and the splendor of his majesty!
The haughty eyes of man will be lowered,
the arrogance of men will be abased,
and the Lord alone will be exalted, on that day.
For the Lord of hosts will have his day
against all that is proud and arrogant,
all that is high, and it will be brought low;
Yes, against all the cedars of Lebanon
and all the oaks of Bashan,
Against all the lofty mountains
and all the high hills,
Against every lofty tower
and every fortified wall,
Against all the ships of Tarshish
and all stately vessels.
Human pride will be abased,
the arrogance of men brought low,
And the Lord alone will be exalted, on that day.
The idols will perish forever.
Men will go into caves in the rocks
and into holes in the earth,
From the terror of the Lord
and the splendor of his majesty,
when he arises to overawe the earth.
On that day men will throw to the moles and the bats
the idols of silver and gold which they made for worship.
They go into caverns in the rocks
and into crevices in the cliffs,
From the terror of the Lord
and the splendor of his majesty,
when he arises to overawe the earth.
As for you, let man alone,
in whose nostrils is but a breath;
for what is he worth?
On that day,
The branch of the Lord will be luster and glory,
and the fruit of the earth will be honor and splendor
for the survivors of Israel.
He who remains in Zion
and he that is left in Jerusalem
Will be called holy:
every one marked down for life in Jerusalem.
When the Lord washes away
the filth of the daughters of Zion,
And purges Jerusalem’s blood from her midst
with a blast of searing judgment,
Then will the Lord create,
over the whole site of Mount Zion
and over her place of assembly,
A smoking cloud by day
and a light of flaming fire by night.
For over all, his glory will be shelter and protection:
shade from the parching heat of day,
refuge and cover from storm and rain.

St. Frances Xavier, P, About Today