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tuam implens, gaudeam, atque glorificem potentiam tuam in sæcula.
Oderis, anima mea, Esaü intemperantiam, et Jacobi bona æmuleris, Belial abstinentia supplantes, divina thesaurizes, et laudes Deum in sæcula.
Tranquillum jejunii mare nobis nulla actis tempestate prætergredi tribue, donec ad portum Resurrectionis tuæ perveniamus, misericors, te in secula celebrantes.
freedom of doing thy will, and give glory to thy power, for eternity.
Hate, O my soul, the intemperance of Esau, and imitate the holy Jacob; destroy Belial by abstinence, make treasure to thyself of divine riches, and let the praise of God be for ever on thy lips.
Grant unto us, O merciful Saviour, that we may traverse the sea of our Fast unmolested by storms; and that we, who are ever celebrating thy praise, may be brought to the haven of thy Resurrection.
OF THE FIRST WEEK OF LENT.
TO-DAY'S Station is in the Church of St. Laurence, in Paneperna, one of those which the piety of the Faithful of Rome has built in honour of this the most celebrated of the Martyrs of the Holy City.
parabola hæc in proverbium in Israël. Ecce omnes animæ meæ sunt; ut anima patris, ita et anima filii mea est: anima quæ peccaverit, ipsa morietur. Et vir, si fuerit justus, et fecerit judicium et justitiam, in montibus non comederit, et oculos suos non levaverit ad idola domus Israël et uxorem proximi sui non violaverit, et ad mulierem menstruatam non accesserit et hominem non contristaverit pignus debitori reddiderit: per vim nihil rapuerit: panem suum esurienti dederit, et nudum operuerit vestimento: ad usuram non commodaverit, et amplius non acceperit: ab iniquitate averterit manum suam, et judicium verum fecerit inter virum et virum in præceptis meis ambulaverit, et judicia mea custodierit, ut faciat veritatem; hic justus est, vita vivet, ait Dominus omnipotens.
be no more to you a proverb in Israel. Behold all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine; the soul that sinneth, the same shall die. And if a man be just, and do judgment and justice, and hath not eaten upon the mountains, nor lifted up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, and hath not defiled his neighbour's wife, nor come near to a menstruous woman; and hath not wronged any man, but hath restored the pledge to the debtor, hath taken nothing away by violence, hath given his bread to the hungry, and hath covered the naked with a garment, hath not lent upon usury, nor taken any increase, hath withdrawn his hand from iniquity, and hath executed true judgment between man and man, hath walked in my commandments, and kept my judgments, to do according to the truth; he is just, he shall surely live, saith the Lord God.
These words of the Prophet declare to us the wonderful mercy of God towards the Gentiles, who are preparing to pass from darkness to light, by the grace of holy Baptism. The Jews had a favourite proverb: The Fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the teeth of the Children are set on edge: but God assures us, even in the Old Testament, that sins are personal, that is, they belong to him who commits them, and to no one else; so that, the son of a wicked father, if he walk in the path of righteousness, shall find mercy and salvation. The Apostles and their Disciples preached the Gospel to the Gentiles, and the Gentiles were obedient to the call;
they were the children of idolaters, and yet they were seen flocking to the Font of regeneration, abjuring the evil ways of their fathers, and becoming the objects of God's love. The same happened in the conversion of the Barbarians of the West; it is happening now in our own times, among infidel nations; and many will be the Catechumens who, at the coming Easter, will receive the sacrament of Baptism.
God frequently visits children with temporal punishments, because of the sins of their parents; it is a providence, which acts as a check upon men, deterring them from evil out of fear of bringing misery upon their families. But in the moral order, each individual is treated according to his own merits or demerits; and as God does not impute to a virtuous son the iniquities of the father, so neither do the virtues of the father cover the son's iniquity. Philip the Fair was the grandson of St. Louis; and Wulfere, the wicked king of Mercia, was father of the two saints, Wulfhad and Ruffin. Similar contrasts are often found in families, for, as the Scripture says: God hath left man in the hand of his own counsel. Before man is life and death, good and evil; that which he shall choose, shall be given unto him.1 And yet, such is the mercy of the Lord our God, that, if a man have made a bad choice, but afterwards cast away from himself the evil, and turn to what is good, he shall surely live, and his repentance shall restore to him what he had forfeited.
Sequel of the holy Gospel Sequentia sancti Evangelii according to Matthew.
At that time: Jesus went from thence, and departed into
In illo tempore: egressus Jesus, secessit in partes
1 Ecclus. xv. 14, 18.
Tyri et Sidonis. Et ecce mulier Chananæa a finibus illis egressa clamavit, dicens ei Miserere mei, Domine, fili David: filia mea male a dæmonio vexatur. Qui non respondit ei verbum. Et accedentes discipuli ejus rogabant eum, dicentes: Dimitte eam, quia clamat post nos. Ipse, autem respondens, ait: Non sum missus nisi ad oves quæ perierunt domus Israël. At illa venit, et adoravit eum, dicens: Domine, adjuva me. Qui respondens, ait: Non est bonum sumere panem filiorum, et mittere canibus. At illa dixit: Etiam, Domine; nam et catelli edunt de micis quæ cadunt de mensa dominorum suorum. Tunc respondens Jesus, ait illi: O mulier, magna est fides tua: fiat tibi sicut vis. Et sanata est filia ejus ex illa hora.
the coasts of Tyre and Sidon. And behold a woman of Canaan who came out of those coasts, crying out, said to him: Have mercy on me O Lord, thou Son of David: my daughter is grievously troubled by a devil. Who answered her not a word. And his disciples came and besought him, saying: Send her away, for she crieth after us. And he answering, said: I was not sent but to the sheep that are lost of the house of Israel. But she came, and adored him, saying: Lord, help me. Who answering said: It is not good to take the bread of the children, and to cast it to the dogs. But she said: Yea, Lord; for the whelps also eat of the crumbs that fall from the table of their masters. Then Jesus answering, said to her: O woman, great is thy faith be it done to thee as thou wilt. And her daughter was cured from that hour.
Jesus is in admiration at this woman's Faith; he praises her for it; he would have us imitate her. And yet, she was a Gentile; probably, she had been an idolatress; but maternal love induces her to come to Jesus, and throw herself at his feet. She obtains from him her daughter's cure, and, undoubtedly, her own conversion. It is an illustration of the consoling promise we have just been hearing from the Prophet Ezechiel: there are chosen souls in every race, even in that cursed one of Canaan. Our Lord treats this woman with apparent harshness, although he intend to grant her what she asks: he would have her faith gain strength by being tried, and, by the trial, de