To Be Holy for the Sake of Others

Father Frassinetti states: “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.” In the previous post, we read his comments concerning the former group. Now we shall hear what he has to say about those God wishes to be holy both for their own sake and for the sake of others.

“God also wills that other souls (and these are few in number compared with those mentioned above) should be most holy, not only as regards themselves, but for the good of others also, so that they may shine as admirable examples of sanctity, and, attracting towards themselves the gaze of the whole world, show manifestly forth to all men the power and riches of His grace. On these souls He bestows extraordinary gifts. They have the gift of the sublimest prayer, so that they are able to pass whole days and nights in communion with God, and have ecstasies, being rapt out of themselves, while their bodies, as if they were the lightest feathers, are raised above the ground.”

“To these He makes known hidden things; He enables them to predict the future; He gives them power over diseases, and sometimes over death. Blessed be God, who has always continued to make His Church illustrious by these admirable examples of holiness! There were such in all centuries, as the history of past centuries teaches us; and without doubt there are some now.”

“In these illustrious examples of sanctity we admire the majesty of God’s omnipotence, the largeness of His mercy, the depth of His wisdom. We, seeing that these men, children of Adam, subject like ourselves to all human weaknesses and miseries, have yet arrived at such great things by the power of Divine grace,—we, who are spectators of these things, are encouraged in all the difficulties which this unhappy life on earth brings upon us, and we gain confidence from their example, trusting that we shall be able to overcome all that opposes our progress on the road to heaven.”

St. Francis de Sales remarked in a sermon: “In this world some are called to lead a life entirely angelic and celestial, which we should reverently admire, not that we should copy their actions, but that we may bless God for the graces He bestowed on them.”

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

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