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Love of God

Love!...that is what I ask...I know but one thing now - to love Thee, O Jesus! Glorious deeds are not for me, I cannot preach the Gospel, shed my blood...what does it matter? My brothers toil instead of me, and I, the little child, I keep quite close to the royal throne, I love for those who fight.

Story of A Soul, Chapter XI

How shall I show my love is proved by deeds? Well - the little child will strew flowers...she will embalm the Divine Throne with their fragrance, will sing with silvery voice the canticle of love.

Yes, my Beloved, it is thus that my life's brief day shall be spent before Thee. No other means have I of proving my love than to strew flowers; that is, to let no little sacrifice escape me, not a look, not a word, to avail of the very least actions and do them for Love. I wish to suffer for Love's sake and for Love's sake even to rejoice; thus shall I strew flowers. Not one shall I find without shedding its petals for Thee...and then I will sing, I will always sing, even if I must gather my roses in the very midst of thorns - and the longer and sharper the thorns the sweeter shall be my song.

Story of A Soul, Chapter XI

The good God does not need years to accomplish His work of love in a soul; one ray from His Heart can, in an instant, make His flower bloom for eternity...

VI letter to her sister Celine

Seeing the eternal recompense so disproportionate to the trifling sacrifices of this life, I longed to love Jesus, to love Him ardently, to give him a thousand proofs of tenderness while yet I could do so...

Story of A Soul, Chapter V

In times of aridity when I am incapable of praying, of practicing virtue, I seek little opportunities, mere trifles, to give pleasure to Jesus; for instance a smile, a pleasant word when inclined to be silent and to show weariness. If I find no opportunities, I at least tell Him again and again that I love Him; that is not difficult and it keeps alive the fire in my heart. Even though this fire of love might seem extinct I would still throw little straws upon the embers and I am certain it would rekindle.

XVI letter to her sister Celine

Love can supply for length of years. Jesus, because He is Eternal, regards not the time but only the love.

V letter to Mother Agnes of Jesus

O Jesus, I ask of Thee only Peace! ...Peace, and above all LOVE - love without bound or limit. Jesus, let me for Thy sake die a martyr; give me martyrdom of soul or body. Ah! rather give me both the one and the other!

Story of A Soul, Chapter VIII

I desire no sensible consolation in loving; provided Jesus feel my love that is enough for me. Oh! to love Him and to make Him loved...how sweet it is...

V letter to Mother Agnes of Jesus

How sweet is the way of Love! True, one may fall, one may not be always faithful, but Love, knowing how to draw profit from all, very quickly consumes whatsoever may displease Jesus, leaving naught but humble and profound peace in the innermost soul.

Story of A Soul, Chapter VIII

Ah! since that day love penetrates me and surrounds me; this Merciful Love each moment renews and purifies me, leaving in my heart no trace of sin. No, I cannot fear Purgatory; I know that I do not merit even to enter with the Holy Souls into that place of expiation, but I know too that the fire of Love is more sanctifying than the fire of Purgatory, I know that Jesus cannot will needless suffering for us, and that He would not inspire me with the desires I feel if He were unwilling to fulfill them.

Story of A Soul, Chapter VIII

To offer oneself as a victim to Divine Love is not to offer oneself to sweetness - to consolation; but to every anguish, every bitterness, for Love lives only by sacrifice; and the more a soul wills to be surrendered to Love, the more must she be surrendered to suffering.

Story of A Soul, Chapter XII

O my God, Thou knowest I have never desired but to love Thee alone. I seek no other glory. Thy Love has gone before me from my childhood, it has grown with my growth, and now it is an abyss the depths of which I cannot fathom.

Story of A Soul, Chapter XI

Love attracts love, mine rushes forth unto Thee, it would fain fill up the abyss which attracts it; but alas! it is not even as one drop of dew lost in the Ocean. To love Thee as Thou lovest me I must borrow Thy very Love - then only, can I find rest.

Story of A Soul, Chapter XI

Just as a torrent sweeps along with it unto the depths of the sea whatsoever it encounters on its course, even so, my Jesus, does the soul which plunges into the boundless ocean of Thy Love draw after her all her treasures. Lord, Thou knowest that for me these treasures are the souls it has pleased Thee to unite to mine.

Story of A Soul, Chapter XI

Charity gave me the key to my vocation. I understood that the Church being a body composed of different members, the most essential, the most noble of all the organs would not be wanting to her; I understood that the Church has a heart and that this heart is burning with love; that it is love alone which makes the members work, that if love were to die away apostles would no longer preach the Gospel, martyrs would refuse to shed their blood. I understood that love comprises all vocations, that love is everything, that it embraces all times and all places because it is eternal!

Story of A Soul, Chapter XI

This little prayer which includes all my desires I ask you to say for me each day:

"Merciful Father, in the name of Thy sweet Jesus, of the Blessed Virgin and of the Saints, I pray Thee that my sister be fired with Thy spirit of love, and that Thou wilt grant her the grace to make Thee greatly loved."

If God should take me soon to Himself, I ask you to continue each day this same prayer, for in Heaven my desire will be the same as upon earth; to love Jesus and to make Him loved.

III Letter to her Missionary "Brothers"

Love alone have I ever given to the good God; with love He will repay me.

Story of A Soul, Chapter XII

Her last words - looking at her crucifix: "OH!...I LOVE HIM!...MY GOD, I...LOVE...THEE!!!"

Story of A Soul, Chapter XII

Love for Others

On the day of my conversion Charity entered into my heart and with it a yearning to forget self always; thenceforward I was happy.

Story of A Soul, Chapter V

Jesus wills that we give alms to Him as to one poor and needy. He puts Himself as it were at our mercy; He will take nothing but what we give Him from our heart, and the very least trifle is precious in His sight. He stretches forth His Hand, this sweet Saviour, to receive of us a little love, so that in the radiant Day of Judgment He may be able to address to us those ineffable words: "Come, ye blessed of my Father; for I was hungry, and you gave me to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave me to drink; I was a stranger, and you took me in; sick and you visited me; I was in prison, and you came to me."
(Matthew 25:34-36).

XV Letter to Her Sister Celine

I applied myself above all to practice quite hidden little acts of virtue; thus I liked to fold the mantles forgotten by the Sisters, and sought a thousand opportunities of rendering them service.

Story of A Soul, Chapter VII

I feel that when I am charitable it is Jesus alone who acts in me; the more I am united to Him the more do I love all my Sisters. If, when I desire to increase this love in my heart, the demon tries to set before my eyes the faults of one or other of the Sisters, I hasten to call to mind her virtues, her good desires; I say to myself that if I had seen her fall once, she may well have gained many victories which she conceals through humility; and that even what appears to me a fault may in truth be an act of virtue by reason of the intention. Story of A Soul, Chapter IX

True Charity consists in bearing with all the defects of our neighbor, in not being surprised at his failings, and in being edified by his least virtues; Charity must not remain shut up in the depths of the heart, for no man lighteth a candle and putteth it under a bushel, but upon a candlestick, that it may shine to all that are in the house. (Cf. Matthew 5:15). It seems to me that this candle represents the Charity which ought to enlighten and make joyful, not only those who are dearest to me, but all who are in the house.

Story of A Soul, Chapter IX

There is no artist who does not like his work praised, and the Divine Artist of souls is pleased when we do not stop at the exterior, but penetrating even to the inmost sanctuary which He has chosen for His dwelling, we admire its beauty.

Story of A Soul, Chapter IX

I ought to seek the company of those Sisters who according to nature please me least. I ought to fulfill in their regard the office of the Good Samaritan. A word, a kindly smile, will often suffice to gladden a wounded and sorrowful heart.

Story of A Soul, Chapter X

If it is hard to give to whoever asks, it is still harder to let what belongs to us to be taken, without asking it back, or rather, I ought to say it seems hard; for the yoke of the Lord is sweet and light (Cf. Matthew 11:30): when we accept it we feel its sweetness immediately.

Story of A Soul, Chapter IX

When Charity is deeply rooted in the soul it shows itself exteriorly: there is so gracious a way of refusing what we cannot give, that the refusal pleases as much as the gift.

Story of A Soul, Chapter IX

Remembering that Charity covereth a multitude of sins (Proverbs 10:12), I draw from this fruitful mine opened to us by Our Lord in His sacred Gospels. I search the depths of His adorable words and cry out with David: "I have run in the way of thy commandments when thou didst enlarge my heart." (Psalms 118:32). And charity alone can enlarge my heart...

O Jesus! since this sweet flame consumes it I run with delight in the way of Thy new Commandment, and therein will I run until the blessed day when with Thy Virgin train I shall follow Thee through Thy boundless Realm singing Thy New Canticle which must surely be the Canticle of LOVE.

Story of A Soul, Chapter IX

Prayer

I have not the courage to force myself to seek beautiful prayers in books; not knowing which to choose I act as children do who cannot read; I say quite simply to the good God what I want to tell Him, and He always understands me.

Story of A Soul, Chapter X

Prayer is, for me, an outburst from the heart; it is a simple glance darted upwards to Heaven; it is a cry of gratitude and of love in the midst of trial as in the midst of joy! In a word, it is something exalted, supernatural, which dilates the soul and unites it to God. Sometimes when I find myself, spiritually, in dryness so great that I cannot produce a single good thought, I recite very slowly a Pater or an Ave Maria; these prayers alone console me, they suffice, they nourish my soul.

Story of A Soul, Chapter X

As I grew older I loved the good God more and more, and very frequently did I offer Him my heart, using the words my mother had taught me. I strove in all my actions to please Jesus and was most watchful never to offend Him.

Story of A Soul, Chapter II

Great is the power of prayer - a queen, as one might say, having free access always to the King, and able to obtain whatever she asks. In order to be heard, it is not necessary to read from a book a beautiful form of prayer adapted to the circumstances; if it were so, how greatly to be pitied should I be!

Story of A Soul, Chapter X

"Draw me, we will run..."
To ask to be drawn is to will intimate union with the object which holds the heart captive. If fire and iron were gifted with reason, and that the latter said to the fire: "Draw me," would not this prove that it desired to become identified with the fire even so far as to share its substance? Well, that is exactly my prayer. I beg of Jesus to draw me into the flames of His Love, to unite me so closely to Himself that He may live and act in me. I feel that the more the fire of love inflames my heart, the more I shall say: "Draw me," the more also will the souls who draw near to mine run swiftly in the fragrant odors of the Well-Beloved.

Story of A Soul, Chapter XI

Souls thus on fire cannot rest inactive. They may sit at the feet of Jesus, like Saint Mary Magdalene, listening to His sweet and ardent words; but, while seeming to give nothing, they do give far more than Martha who troubles herself with many things (Luke 10:41). It is not however of Martha's labors that Jesus disapproves, but only her too great anxiety; to this very same work His Blessed Mother humbly submitted herself, when she had to prepare the repasts for the Holy Family.

All the Saints have understood this, and more especially perhaps those who have enlightened the world with the luminous teaching of the Gospel. Was it not from prayer that Saint Paul, Saint Augustine, Saint Thomas Aquinas, Saint John of the Cross, Saint Teresa and so many other friends of God drew that wondrous science which enraptures the greatest intellects?

Archimedes said: "Give me a lever and a fulcrum, and I will raise the world." What he was unable to obtain because his request had but a material end and was not addressed to God, the Saints have obtained in full measure. For fulcrum, the Almighty has given them Himself, Himself alone! for lever, prayer, which enkindles the fire of love; and thus it is that they have uplifted the world, thus it is that saints still militant uplift it, and will uplift it till the end of time.

Story of A Soul, Chapter XI

How beautiful is our vocation! It is for us, it is for us, it is for Carmel to preserve "the salt of the earth" (Matthew 5:13). We offer our prayers and sacrifices for the apostles of the Lord; we ought ourselves to be their apostles while by word and example they preach the Gospel to our brethren.

Story of A Soul, Chapter VI

Her prayer was continual though she was habitually plunged in aridity. One day a novice entered her cell paused, struck by the celestial expression of her countenance. She was sewing with alacrity yet seemed lost in profound contemplation.

"Of what are you thinking?" asked the young Sister. "I am meditating on the Pater," she replied. "It is so sweet to call the good God our Father." And tears shone in her eyes.

Story of A Soul, Chapter XII

I do not well see what more I shall have in Heaven than now, she once said. I shall see the good God, it is true; but as to being with Him, I am wholly with Him already upon earth.

Story of A Soul, Chapter XII

 

Faith

"On each fresh occasion of combat, when the enemy desires to challenge me, I conduct myself valiantly: knowing that to fight a duel is an unworthy act, I turn my back upon the adversary without ever looking him in the face; then I run to my Jesus and tell Him I am ready to shed every drop of blood in testimony of my belief that there is a Heaven, I tell Him I am glad to be unable to contemplate, while on earth, with the eyes of the soul, the beautiful Heaven that awaits me so He will deign to open it for eternity to poor unbelievers."

Story of A Soul, Chapter IX

He whose Heart ever watcheth, taught me, that while for a soul whose faith equals but a tiny grain of mustard seed, He works miracles, in order that this faith which is so weak may be fortified; yet for His intimate friends, for His Mother, He did not work miracles until He had put their faith to test. Did He not let Lazarus die through Martha and Mary had sent to tell Him that he was sick? At the marriage at Cana, the Blessed Virgin having asked Him to come to the assistance of the master of the house, did He not reply that His hour was not yet come? But after the trial, what a recompense! Water changed to wine, Lazarus restored to life...

Story of A Soul, Chapter VI

Hope

How I thirst for Heaven-that blessed habitation where our love for Jesus will have no limit! But to get there we must suffer... we must weep... Well, I wish to suffer all that shall please my Beloved, I wish to let Him do just as He wills with His "little ball."

V Letter to Sr. Marie of the Sacred Heart

Oh! What mysteries will be revealed to us later... How often have I thought that I perhaps owe all the graces showered upon me to the earnest prayer of a little soul whom I shall know only in Heaven. It is God's will that in this world by means of prayer Heavenly treasures should be imparted by souls one to another, so that when they reach the Fatherland they may love one another with a love born of gratitude, with an affection far, far exceeding the most ideal family affection upon earth.

There, we shall meet with no indifferent looks, because all the Saints will be indebted to each other.

No envious glances will be seen; the happiness of every one of the elect will be the happiness of all. With the Martyrs we shall be like to the Martyrs; with the Doctors we shall be as the Doctors; with the Virgins, as the Virgins; and just as the members of a family are proud of one another, so shall we be of our brethren, without the least jealousy.

Who knows even if the joy we shall experience in beholding the glory of the great Saints, and knowing that by a secret disposition of Providence we have contributed thereunto, who knows if this joy will not be as intense and sweeter perhaps, than the happiness they will themselves possess.

And do you not think that on their side the great Saints, seeing what they owe to quite little souls, will love them with an incomparable love? Delightful and surprising will be the friendships found there - I am sure of it. The favored companion of an Apostle or a great Doctor of the Church, will perhaps be a young shepherd lad; and a simple little child may be the intimate friend of a Patriarch. Oh! how I long to dwell in that Kingdom of Love...

Counsels and Reminiscences

A day...an hour...and we shall have reached the port! My God, what shall we see then? What is that life which will never have an end?...Jesus will be the Soul of our soul. Unfathomable mystery! "Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither hath it entered into the heart of man what great things God hath prepared for them that love him." (1 Corinthians 2:9). And this will all come soon - yes, very soon, if we ardently love Jesus.

VI Letter to Her Sister Celine

A sister showed her a photograph representing Joan of Arc consoled in the prison by her Voices. Saint Therese said: "I too am consoled by an interior voice. The Saints encourage me from above, they say to me: 'So long as thou art in fetters thou canst not fulfill thy mission; but later, after thy death - then will be the time of thy conquests'."

Counsels and Reminiscences

Life is passing, Eternity draws nigh: soon shall we live the very life of God. After having drunk deep at the fount of bitterness, our thirst will be quenched at the very source of all sweetness.

Yes, the figure of this world passeth away (1 Cor. 7:31), soon shall we see new heavens; a more radiant sun will brighten with its splendors ethereal seas and infinite horizons... We shall no longer be prisoners in a land of exile, all will be at an end and with our Heavenly Spouse we shall sail o'er boundless waters; now our harps are hung upon the willows that border the rivers of Babylon (Cf. Ps. 136:2), but in the day of our deliverance what harmonies will then be heard! With what joy shall we not make every chord of our instruments to vibrate! Today, we weep remembering Sion,... how shall we sing the songs of the Lord in a strange land? (Cf. Ps. 136:1,4).

V Letter to Her Sister Celine

In Heaven the good God will do all I wish, because I have never done my own will upon earth.

Counsels and Reminiscences

Even now I know it: yes, all my hopes will be fulfilled... yes... the Lord will work wonders for me which will surpass infinitely my immeasurable desires.

VII Letter to Mother Agnes of Jesus