To Be Holy for Your Own Sake

Father Frassinetti writes: “God wishes all to be holy; but some He wishes to be holy for their own sakes, some He wills to be holy for their own sake and for the sake of others also.”

Concerning the first group—those God wishes to be holy for their own sakes—he explains: “God wills that certain souls should acquire perfection, in order that they may have great glory in Heaven; and from these nothing is required in regard to others except the fulfilment of their duties and the good example which every one is bound to give to his neighbour. Therefore He wills that their holiness should shine with resplendent light before His Divine eyes, but He does not will that they should be equally resplendent in the eyes of the world—and observe that, among all the blessed souls, these are by far the greater number, although little known, because not distinguished by any admirable or extraordinary signs.”

“How many there are, not merely among religious, but also among married people, among the rich, the poor, the learned, the ignorant, who find it easiest to live in great humility! Yes, you, O devout souls, that grieve at the sight of so many wicked people in this world outraging and blaspheming our good God, comfort yourselves by the thought that there are also very many good Christians in all conditions of life, who, seeking after perfection, serve our Lord faithfully, and who are very holy in His eyes, although not much so in the eyes of their fellow-men. Oh, how many you will see among the most exalted in Paradise who were very little distinguished upon earth!”

“They are most holy before God and merit the greatest glory in Heaven who have the most vivid faith, the firmest hope, the most burning charity; and faith, hope, and charity are interior virtues of the soul, which may exist in great perfection without making much external show.”

Quotations from Joseph Frassinetti, The Consolation of the Devout Soul, trans. Georgiana Lady Chatterton (London: Burns and Oates, 1876).

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