Sunday After Pentecost
At the Introit of the Mass
the justice and mercy of God are praised:
INTROIT Thou art just, O Lord, and thy
judgment is right; deal with thy servant according to thy mercy.
Blessed are the undefiled in the way; who walk in the law of the
Lord. (Ps. CXVIII.) Glory etc.
COLLECT Grant to Thy people, we beseech
Thee, O Lord, to avoid the defilements of the devil, and with a pure
mind to follow Thee, the only God. Thro'.
EPISTLE (Ephes. IV. 1- 6.) Brethren, I,
a prisoner in the Lord, beseech you that you walk worthy of the
vocation in which you are called. With all humility and mildness,
with patience, supporting one another in charity, careful to keep
the unity of the spirit in the bond of peace. One body and one
spirit, as you are called in one hope of your calling. One Lord, one
faith, one baptism. One God, and Father of all, who is above all,
and through all, and in us all. Who is blessed for ever and ever.
ADMONITION Implore God continually for
grace to accomplish and make certain your vocation by practicing
these virtues, recommended by St. Paul.
INSTRUCTION ON THE ONE ONLY SAVING
one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all. (Ephes. IV. 5.
These words of the great
Apostle of the Gentiles show clearly, that it is not a matter of
indifference, what faith or religion we profess. Yet in our times so
poor in faith, we often hear the assertion from so-called
enlightened men: “It is all the same to what religion we belong, we
can be saved in any, if we only believe in God and live uprightly."
This assertion is impious! Consider, ..my dear Christian, there is
but one God, and this one God has sent only one Redeemer; and this
one Redeemer has preached but one doctrine, and has established but
one Church. Had God wished that there should be more than one
Church, then Christ would have founded them, nay, He would not have
preached a new doctrine, established a new, Christian Church; for
the Jews also believed in one God. But Jesus cast aside Paganism and
Judaism, promulgated a new religion, and founded a new Church.
Nowhere does He speak of Churches, but always of one Church. He says
that we must hear this Church, and does not add, that if we will not
hear this Church, we may hear some other. He speaks of only one
shepherd, one flock, and one fold, into which all men are to be
brought. In the same manner He speaks always of one kingdom upon
earth, just as there is only one kingdom in heaven; of only one
master of the house and one family, of one field and one vineyard,
whereby He referred to His Church; of one rock, upon which He would
build His Church. On the day before His death, He prayed fervently
to His Heavenly Father, that all who believe in Him, might be and
remain one, as He and the Father are one, and He gave His disciples
the express command to preach His gospel to all nations, and to
teach them all things, whatsoever He had commanded them. This
command the apostles carried out exactly. Everywhere they preached
one and the same doctrine, establishing in all places Christian
communities, which were all united by the bond of the same faith.
Their principal care was to prevent schisms in faith, they warned
the faithful against heresy, commanded all originators of such to be
avoided, and anathematized those who preached a gospel different
from theirs. As the apostles, so did their successors. All the holy
Fathers speak with burning love of the necessary unity of faith, and
deny those all claim to salvation who remain knowingly in schism and
separation from the true Church of Christ.
Learn hence, dear Christian,
that there can be but one true Church; if there is but one true
Church, it naturally follows that in her alone salvation can be
obtained, and the assertion that we can be saved by professing any
creed, is false and impious. Jesus who is the Way, the Truth, and
the Life , speaks of but one Church , which we must hear, if we wish
to be saved. He who does not hear the Church, He says, should be
considered as a heathen and publican. He speaks furthermore of one
fold, and He promises eternal life only to those sheep who belong to
this fold, obey the voice of the shepherd and feed in His pasture.
The apostles were also convinced that only the one, true Church
could guide us to salvation. Without faith it is impossible to
please God, writes St. Paul to the Hebrews, (XI. 6.) and this faith
is only one, he teaches the Ephesians. (IV. 5.) If the apostles had
believed that we could be saved in any religion, they would
certainly not have contended so strenuously for unity, they would
not have declared so solemnly, that we should not belong to any
other than to Christ alone, and that we must receive and obey His
doctrine. As the apostles taught so did their successors and all the
Fathers agree that there is no salvation outside of the true Church.
St. Cyprian writes: "If any one outside Noah's ark could find
safety, then also will one outside the Church find salvation."
(De unit. eccl. c. 7.) From all this it follows, that there
is only one true Church which insures salvation, out of which no one
can be saved.
But which is this Church? The
Roman Catholic, Apostolic Church, for she alone was founded, by
Christ, she alone was watered with the blood of the apostles and of
thousands of holy martyrs, she alone has the marks of the true
Church of Christ, [see the Instruction for the first
Sunday after Easter] against which He has promised that the
powers of hell shall not prevail. Those who fell away from the
Church three hundred years ago do, indeed contend that the Church
fell into error and no longer possessed the true, pure gospel of
Jesus. Were they right, Jesus might be blamed, for He established
this Church, promising to remain with her and guide her through the
Holy Ghost until the end of the world. He would, therefore, have
broken His word, or He was not powerful enough to keep it. But who
dare say this? On the contrary, she has existed for eighteen hundred
years, whilst the greatest and most powerful kingdoms have been
overthrown, and the firmest thrones crumbled away. If she were not
the only true and saving Church, founded by Christ, how could she
have existed so long, since Jesus Himself said: Every plant which my
heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up. (Matt. XV.
13.) If she were not the Church of Christ, she would have been
destroyed long ago, but she still stands today, whilst her enemies'
who battled against her have disappeared, and will continue to
disappear; for the gates of hell shall not prevail against her, says
our Lord. He has kept His promise and will keep it, notwithstanding
all the oppositions and calumnies of her implacable
You see, therefore, my dear
Christian, that the Catholic Church is the only true, the only
saving Church; be not deceived by those who are neither cold nor
warm, and who say: "We can be saved in any religion, if we only
believe in God and live uprightly," and who wish to rob you of your
holy faith, and precipitate you into the sea of doubt, error, and
falsehood. Outside of the Catholic Church there is no salvation;
hold this firmly, for it is the teaching of Jesus, His apostles, and
all the Fathers; for this doctrine the apostles and a countless host
.of 'the faithful have shed their blood. Obey the teaching of this
Church, follow her laws, make use of her help and assistance, and
often raise your hands and heart to heaven to thank God for the
priceless grace of belonging to this one, true Church; forget not to
pray for your erring brethren, who are still outside of the Church
that the Lord may lead them into her, that His promise may be
fulfilled: There will be one fold, and one shepherd.
35-46.) At that time, The Pharisees came to Jesus, and one of them,
a doctor of the law, asked him, tempting him: Master, which is the
great commandment of the law? Jesus said to him: Thou shaft love the
Lord thy God with thy whole heart, and with thy whole soul, and with
thy whole mind.
This is the greatest and the
first commandment. And the second is like to this: Thou shalt love
thy neighbor as thyself. On these two commandments dependeth the
whole law and the prophets. And the Pharisees being gathered
together, Jesus asked them, saying: What think you of Christ; whose
son is he? They say to him: David's. He saith to them: How then doth
David in spirit call him Lord; saying: The Lord said to my Lord, Sit
on my right hand, until I make thy enemies thy footstool? If David
then call him Lord, how is he his son? And no man was able to answer
him a word: neither durst any man from that day forth ask him any
What is meant by loving god?
It means to find one’s
pleasure, happiness and joy in God, because He is he highest and
most perfect Good; to rejoice in His infinite majesty and glory; to
direct one’s thoughts, words, and actions towards Him as our only
end: to do His will in all things, an be prepared always rather to
lose everything, even life itself, than His friendship.
What is meant by loving God with our whole heart,
our whole soul, etc. ?
These different expressions
all properly mean the same thing, namely, that we should cling to
God with a true, sincere and heartfelt love, but by our heart our
will may be understood, that power by which we wish God all glory,
and desire nothing more than that He be known, loved, and honored by
all men. The soul signifies the intellect by means of which we
should endeavor to arrive at the knowledge and love of God, praise
and glorify Him above all things. The mind may signify our memory,
with Which we continually remember God and the innumerable benefits
bestowed on us by Him, praise Him for them, thank Him, and always
walk irreproachably before Him. Finally, we love God with all our
strength, if we employ all the powers and faculties of our body in
His service, and direct all our actions to Him as to our last
true love, if we love God only because He is good to
This is grateful love, which
is good and praiseworthy, but it is not perfect love, because the
motive is self-love and self-interest.
therefore, is perfect love?
When we love God only because
He is in Himself the highest Good, and most worthy of all love. In
this manner we should endeavor to love Him; not through
self-interest not through hope of reward, not through fear of
punishment, but only because He, as the greatest Good, contains all
goodness and, therefore, deserves to be loved only on account of
Himself. Such love had St. Francis Xavier, which he very beautifully
expressed in the following canticle, composed by himself:
O God, I give my love to
Not for the heaven Thou'st made for me,
because who love not Thee
Will burn in hell eternally.
dying throes on Calvary,
My Jesus, Thou didst think of
Didst bear the lance, the nails, the tree,
scoffs, contempt and infamy,
And pangs untold, all lovingly,
The scourge, the sweat the agony,
And death itself,
-all, all for me,
A sinner and Thy enemy.
Why therefore, should not I love
dead for love of me?
Not that I may in heaven be,
Not that from hell I may be
Not urged by
dread of endless pain,
Not lured by prize of endless gain,
But as Thou, Lord, didst first
So do I
love and will love Thee.
To Thee, my King, I give my heart,
For this alone t hat God Thou
fear exist with love?
Servile fear cannot, but
filial fear may. Servile fear is rather a fear of punishment than a
fear of offending God. Where such fear exists, love cannot dwell;
for in love, writes St. Augustine, (in Joann. Tr. 9.) there
is no fear, for perfect love casteth out fear. ( I John IV. 18.)
Filial fear, on the contrary, is the fear of offending God. This
fear leads to love and is also an effect of love; it is the
beginning of wisdom. (Eccles. I. 16.) Let us cherish this fear, for
it will drive away sin, as sentinels expel thieves; (Ecclus. I 16.)
it will replenish us with joy, and gladness, and obtain for us in
our last moments divine blessings and a holy death. (Ecclus.. I.
may we obtain a perfect love of God?
By meditating on His
infinite, divine perfections, such as His almighty power, His
wisdom, His splendor, His beauty, etc.; by contemplating His
boundless love for us, in the incarnation, sufferings, and death of
His only-begotten Son; by frequently practicing this virtue; by
fervent prayer; and by making acts of love, such as are found in
should we practice the virtue of love of Gods?
As soon as we have arrived at
the age of reason; when the world, the devil and the flesh, endeavor
to withdraw us from God, by their apparent goods and pleasures; when
we have separated ourselves from God by mortal sin; when we receive
the holy Sacraments, particularly holy Communion; when we receive a
particular grace from God; when we use food and drink and other
lawful enjoyments; when we contemplate God's creatures; often during
the day.; and especially in the hour of death.
[Concerning the love of
our neighbor , see the
twelfth Sunday after Pentecost].
Why is the commandment to' love God and our neighbor'
called the greatest commandment?
Because in it are contained
all the other commandments, for Christ says, in it consists the
whole law. He who loves God with his whole heart, does not separate
himself from God by infidelity, does not practice public or private
superstition and idolatry; he does not murmur against God, does not
desecrate the name of God by cursing and swearing; he does not
profane the Sabbath, because he knows that all this is displeasing
to God. On the contrary, he hopes in God, keeps Sundays and days of
obligation holy, and observes all the commandments of the Church,
because God wishes that we hear the Church; he honors his parents,
inflicts no evil upon his neighbor; does not commit adultery, doe's
not steal, calumniates no one, does not bear false witness, does not
judge rashly, is not envious, malicious or cruel, but rather
practices the corporal and spiritual works of mercy; and all this,
because he loves God and his neighbor.
is the meaning of the question What think you of
Christ asked the Pharisees
this question in order to convince them, from their own answer, that
He was not only the Son of David, but that He as the only-begotten
Son of God was the Lord of David and of all men from eternity. (Fs.
II. 7.) , Unhappily, even today there are men who like the Pharisees
deny the divinity of Christ, the Son of the living God, consider Him
merely a very wise and virtuous man, and do not receive His
doctrine, confirmed by so many miracles. Beware, my dear Christian,
of these men who rob you of the peace of the soul, and the consoling
hope of a future resurrection and eternal life, together with faith
in Christ, the divine Redeemer. But if you believe Christ to be the
Son of God and our Lord, Lawgiver, Instructor, and Redeemer,
follow His teaching, and do not contradict indeed what you profess
with your lips.
PRAYER O most amiable Jesus! who hast
admonished us so affectionately to love God an& our neighbor,
pour the fire of Thy love into our hearts, that all our deeds and
actions, x,11 our thoughts and words may begin and end with Thy
love. Grant, that we may love Thee with all the powers of our body
and. soul, ,and thereby be so united to Thee, that, like St. Paul,
no temptation, no tribulation, no danger, not even death, may be
able to separate us from Thee. Grant us also, that we may love our
neighbors, friends, and enemies as ourselves for Thy sake, and thus
be made worthy to possess Thee as our Redeemer and merciful