Preserving Spiritual Tranquility – Part 2 of 5

St Gertrude by Miguel Cabrera

Father Frassinetti states: “As long as you possess the holy love of God you cannot possibly be wanting in a holy fear of Him; because whosoever loves God necessarily fears to offend God, necessarily dreads hell, which is the eternal separation from Him, and in which the greatest of all its miseries is to hate God. . . . The fear of God may exist in our souls without the love of Him; this is the case with those who repent of their sins from attrition only; but the love of God can never exist unaccompanied by a holy fear.”

“We ought not to lose tranquillity of heart because we commit faults and even sins. . . . Defects and sins are cancelled by sorrow and by repentance; so that if you fall into any fault, even a grievous one (from which may God guard you, and from which He will certainly guard you if you desire always to love Him), humble yourself, repent, but with peacefulness and with tranquillity of heart; for this is certainly the way to obtain mercy and to be sure of amendment.”

“We ought not to lose tranquillity of heart on account of the uncertainty of remaining in a state of grace. . . . We may have a true certainty of being in the grace of God, when we either do not remember to have committed mortal sin, or when, having committed it, we have done our best to obtain pardon.”

Father Frassinetti addresses those who fear they have not sufficiently repented of their sins: “Is it not true that if, in your past life, you committed mortal sins, you have amended your ways, and do not fall into them now? Is it not true that your life is different now from what it was then? Is it not true that while you then committed mortal sins, because you could not bear to mortify your passions, you would not commit such sins now, were it to save you from suffering death? Well, then, this proves that you have every security that God has given you the grace of a true repentance, and that your will, however much it may formerly have been attached to sin, is now just as much alienated from it.”

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

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