Friday, October 31, 2008

An event that was (for me) a revelation

Yesterday I found the title of the booklet by Msgr. Giussani I read years ago in the English edition of the Italian magazine 30 Days in the Church and in the World. It was called He Is If He Changes. Sadly, this is not in the 30 Days archive. I did find a couple of reflections that Don Giussani gave to novices of Memores Domini in the summer of 2003, which would have been about a year-and-a-half before he realized his destiny. In reading these brief reflections I was deeply moved by Giussani's paternal care. I was also moved by his honesty. The quote below is uncharacteristic of the Giussani I have read:

"You have been told that one who loves is one who truly aids your destiny, who truly loves the mission of our life, who truly loves your vocation. Yes, it is true, God has chosen me as responsible for your vocation. This is a given fact that cannot leave anyone unmoved. I say this so that you may pray to Our Lady to help me in this great task that she has given me, that her Son has given me, that Jesus has given me.

"I do not know if, in the last meditation, a phrase was quoted that has been handed down to us by the history of the Church, Cardinal Baronio’s phrase, 'Oboedientia et pax,' obedience and peace. Obedience to God is given by obedience to the one He has placed as responsible for your life.

"He has placed me, He has called me, as responsible for your life—I repeat—with all my faults, with all the weaknesses I may have; but it is His strength, His strength that saves you. His strength returns to you as light on your path. His strength makes your steps sure—not the strength of men, but of God—along the road that He will point out to you through my words, through the cordiality of my heart. Any other solution is very doubtful—it does not avoid ambiguity, because someone can claim to love your destiny and your vocation, while he really loves himself, while he loves his forms of vocation, while he loves the whims of his heart as if they came straight from God.

"Let us pray to the Lord, then, with a Glory be to St Joseph, patron of the holy Church, whom no one would ever have dared to think responsible for Christ, if it were not for the fact that he was placed, by Our Lady, as responsible for His life."
The angel of the Lord declared unto Mary
and conceived of the Holy Spirit

Behold the handmaid of the Lord
Be it done unto me according to thy word

And the Word became flesh
and dwells among us

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee.
Blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death.

Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God
that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ

Let us pray:
Pour forth, we beseech thee, O Lord, thy grace into our hearts
that we to whom the Incarnation of Christ, thy Son, was made known by the message of an angel, may by his Passion and Cross be brought to the glory of His of Resurrection, through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

Holy Mary, Mother of God- pray for us
St. Joseph- pray for us
St. Benedict- pray for us
St. Nicholas- pray for us
Don Giussani- pray for us

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