Sanctification of Our Actions – Eleventh Day of August
The Sanctification of Our Actions.
“He hath done all things well.” — St. Matt. 7:37.
Among all the functions which a priest can perform, the Mass certainly is the most excellent, the most holy, the most saintly, the most agreeable to God, and the most useful. If we could but understand with what profound devotion the angels assist thereat! Ah, what then should be the purity of the priest who celebrates! What should be his attention, his devotion! He should approach the altar with the same sentiments as Jesus Christ. He should be as an angel. He should exercise his divine ministry as a saint. He should offer the vows of the people as a pontiff. He should not be satisfied to perform the office of mediator between God and man; he should still more pray for him, remembering that he is man, and a sinful man. — St. Laurence Justinian.
The venerable John of Avila, seeing a priest say the holy Mass with indecent haste, was much pained. Touched with zeal, he approached this undevout priest and said in a low voice, but in a tone capable of moving the priest: “Sir, I beg of you to treat the only Son of God, in Whose presence are, as you would treat the only son of a person whom you considered worthy of some distinction.”
“I prepare myself for the holy sacrifice of the Mass,” said the Bishop of Amiens, Monsigneur D’Orleans, “as I would prepare myself to appear before the tribunal of Jesus Christ.”
St. Ignatius Loyola offered the August Sacrifice with such devotion that he was often seen to be in tears.
St. Vincent do Paul said Mass with so great modesty, so much gravity, such tenderness and piety, that his assistants were deeply touched. Many persons who assisted at his Mass, and who did not know him, were heard to say on leaving the church: “That is a priest who says Mass so devoutly that he must be a saint.”
A priest, who was called the Angel of the mission, during a mission which was given at Tulle, undertook to convert a gentleman who was imbued with wrong ideas of religion, and who had not been to confession for years. After many conversations, all he could obtain of him was a promise to serve his Mass. The modesty, religion, and devotion of the missionary so struck him that he could no longer resist; he became a sincere convert.
My God, it is particularly in the holy Mass I will say that I love Thee. I will neglect nothing in order to be penetrated with the sentiments of Jesus Christ. I will praise and thank God with Him. I will immolate myself with Him. I will not forget that I am Thy victim — a victim devoted to Thy glory, who should sacrifice himself without ceasing for Thee.