THOUGHT FOR TODAY BY
ST. ANTHONY ZACCARIA
If through perfect humility you will be able to know objec tively yourself, only then will you be.
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Bethlehem, PA 18020
Interview with Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, the President of Caritas Internationalis
Make Sad Eyes Smile Interview with Luis Antonio G Cardinal Tagle, the President of Caritas Internationalis, the Archbishop of Manila, Philippines and Fr. Robert B. Kosek, CRSP on the meaning of Charity. September 19, 2015
Blessing & Inauguration of Barnabite Vidyabhavan
Bangalore, India - Sep 4, 2014
LOVE REACHES OUT
Barnabite Heart To Heart Ministry Featured in the AD Times
October update on the construction of the first Barnabite Seminary in Bangalore, India
The First Profession Sep 14, 2013
The First Profession of Renato Graziano Castoro e Przemek Sniegowski.
San Felice a Cancello, Italy
Ad multos annos!
Our Address in Indonesia:
From the left:
JUNE 9 - 2013 BARNABITE DIACONATE ORDINATION
Grace and peace!
Solemn Profession of the Barnabite Brothers - June 1, 2013 Bari - Italy
Presbyteral Ordination of Domenico Vitale, Barnabite
March 13, 2013 Bologna, Italy
The Barnabite Fathers of the North American Province offer congratulations to our new HolyFather Francis I. We delight in the selection of the Pope Francis I. We pledge our continuous loyalty and our service with dedication and zeal in the Church under the leadership of the Holy Father Francis I.
On March 16, 2013 took place the ceremony of the blessing of the cornerstone
of the Barnabite Fathers seminary in Bangalore, India.
Already in the booksstores the new book of Fr. Giovanni M. Semeria, CRSP entitled "Mary, the Ideal of Virtue: Thirty-one Meditations on the Litany of Our Lady," Published by Leonine Publishers. Price $ 12.99
The Barnabite Contribution to the Ecumenical Movement
In 1862 Fr. Cerare Tondini, barnabite founded the "Association of prayers for the return of our separated brethren of the Greek-Russian Church to Catholic unity," spreading it across Europe. He himself was a pilgrim from East to West as a missionary and a scientist, a diplomat and a writer, with an enthusiasm and a boldness that only death could stop.
by Sr. Rorivic P. Israel, ASP
was prepared by the Barnabite Indian Community.
During the White Mass on Oct 21, at the Cathedral of Saint Catharine of Siena in Allentown. PA - the Allentown Guild of Catholic Medical Association declared Saint Anthony Mary Zaccaria as their Patron Saint.
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Blessing of the statue of Our Lady of Graces
The community of the Barnabite Fathers was happy to bless the statue of Our Lady of Graces on September 8, 2012, feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, at the meditation garden of the Barnabite Spiritual Center.
Our Lady of Graces, pray for us!
In this new painting, St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria, as a doctor, attends with tenderness and love to a sick person whose body radiates light, illuminating Christ in him. This confirms Christ’s very own word: “Whatever you do to the least of my brethren, you do it to me.”
Meet the artist - Maria Magdalena Butchart
Upcoming Barnabite publication of Mary, The Ideal of Virtue
by Fr. Giovanni Semeria, CRSP
The Blessed Virgin Mary holds the highest honor of any creature. The Church's Litany to her is a beautiful exposition of the glorious titles. Her virtues shine through when meditating on this prayer. Author and Barnabite priest, Father Giovanni Semeria, exhorts the reader to apply these virtues to one's own life. Father Semeria unfolds the Litany in 31 profound, but challenging, meditations for spiritual reflection.
Father Semeria's meditations are spiritual, not a catechetical. This book assumes the reader already has knowledge of Catholic doctrine. The meditations elevate the reader to apply the attributes of Mary to his own life.
THESE MEDITATIONS WILL BRINGMARIAN SPIRITUALITY TO YOUR SOUL.
(From the back cover of the book)
Ad Multos Annos!
Congregazione dei Chierici Regolari di San Paolo 136° Capitolo Generale
Napoli, Istituto Collegio Denza dei PP. Barnabiti
9-25 luglio 2012
INFORMAZIONE SUI LAVORI CAPITOLARI
Carissimi Confratelli, Consorelle Angeliche, Laici di San Paolo, amici, al termine della prima settimana è desiderio dei Padri Capitolari rendervi partecipi degli eventi più importanti finora vissuti.
Il 10 luglio 2012, dopo l’elezione del Preside, P. Antonio Iannuzzi, e dei Promotori: P. Fabien Bizimana, P. Daniele Ponzoni, P. Giovanni Peragine, P. Frank Papa, i lavori capitolari sono proseguiti nel pomeriggio per la presentazione e discussione della Relazione del Superiore Generale Giovanni M. Villa sullo stato della Congregazione.
L’11 luglio 2012 è continuata, nella prima parte della mattina, la discussione inerente la Relazione sullo stato della Congregazione. Invitato dal Capitolo, è poi seguita la presentazione e discussione della Relazione dell’Economo Generale, P. Giuseppe Cagnetta, sullo stato economico della Congregazione. Nel pomeriggio, invitato dal Capitolo, è stata tenuta la Relazione del P. Mauro Regazzoni, Postulatore Generale; sono poi seguite le relazioni del P. Filippo Lovison, Direttore del Centro Studi Storici, e dei Superiori Provinciali: P. Daniele Ponzoni (Provincia Italiana del Nord), P. Antonio Iannuzzi (Provincia Italiana del Centro Sud), P. Fabien Bizimana (Pro-Provincia Africana), P. Julian Beretta (Provincia Spagnola), P. Gérard Daeren (Provincia Franco-Belga), P. Angelo Leita (Provincia Cilena).
Il 12 luglio 2012, invitato dal Capitolo, ha presentato la sua relazione sulla Fondazione Indiana il P. Gabriele Patil. Sono poi seguite le presentazioni delle Relazioni dei Superiori Provinciali: P. Luis Antônio do Nascimento Pereira (Provincia Brasiliana del Centro Sud), P. Giovanni Incampo (Provincia Brasiliana del Nord), P. Osvaldo Del Valle Giudice (Provincia Argentina), del Delegato P. Kazimierz Lorek (Delegazione Polacca), del Superiore Provinciale P. Robert Kosek (Provincia Nord Americana), e del Delegato P. Joselito Raypan Ortega (Delegazione Filippina). I Capitolari hanno poi dato mandato al Consiglio di Presidenza di preparare una traccia di lavoro per la riflessione sulle strutture della Congregazione, in particolare sulle ipotesi di federazioni, fusioni, e forme diverse di collaborazione.
Il 13 luglio 2012, in mattinata, nell’Aula Capitolare si è discusso circa lo strumento di lavoro presentato dal Consiglio di Presidenza. Nel pomeriggio sono state formate le cinque Commissioni capitolari: Carisma e Vita Comune, Vocazioni, Apostolato, Economia, Strutture.
Il 14 luglio 2012 i Capitolari si sono recati in visita alla Costiera Amalfitana.
Il 15 luglio 2012, nella cappella dell’Istituto Collegio Denza, alle 10.30, S. Ecc.za Mons. Antonio Di Donna, Vicario Generale dell’Archidiocesi di Napoli e Responsabile dell’Area Pastorale, ha ordinato diacono il chierico barnabita don Domenico Vitale. Ha rallegrato questo gioioso momento del Capitolo Generale anche la presenza di S. Ecc.za Mons. Andrea M. Erba, come quella di numerosi confratelli della Provincia Italiana del Centro Sud, dei familiari e amici. Il pomeriggio è stato lasciato libero da lavori capitolari.
Assicurando la profonda dedizione di tutti i Capitolari al bene comune della Congregazione, ci si affida alla vostra preghiera.
Congregation of the Clerics Regular of St. Paul 136 th General Chapter
Naples, Denza Institute College of PP. Barnabites9-25 July 2012
INFORMATION ON FIRST WEEK OF THE GENERAL CHAPTER.
Dear Brothers, Sisters Angelic, Laity of St. Paul, friends, at the end of the first week of the Chapter Fathers desire to share the most important events so far experienced.
On 10 July 2012, after the election of Dean, P. Antonio Iannuzzi, and Promoters: P. Fabien Bizimana, P. Daniel Ponzoni, P. John Peragine, P. Frank Pope, Chapter work continued in the afternoon for the presentation and discussion of the Report of the Superior General John M. Villa on the state of the Congregation.On July 11, 2012 is continued in the first part of the morning, the discussion on the Report on the Situation. Invited by the Chapter, was followed by the presentation and discussion of the Bursar General Report, P. Joseph Cagnetta, economic status of the Congregation. In the afternoon, invited by the Chapter, was given the report of P. Mauro Regazzoni, Postulator General; are then followed the reports of P. Philip Lovison, Director of the Centre for Historical Studies, and the provincials: P. Daniel Ponzoni (Northern Italian Province), P. Antonio Iannuzzi (Italian Province of South Centre), P. Fabien Bizimana (Pro-African Province), P. Julian Beretta (Province of Spain), P. Gérard Daeren (Franco-Belgian Province), P. Angelo Leita (County Chilean).
On 12 July 2012 were presentated the reports of the Provincial Superiors: P. Luis Antônio Pereira do Nascimento (Brazilian Province of the South Centre), P. John Incampo (Brazilian Province of the North), P. Judge Osvaldo Del Valle (Argentina Province), CEO of P. Lorek Kazimierz (Polish Delegation), the Provincial Superior P. Robert Kosek (North American Province), and Officer P. Joselito Ortega Raypan (Philippine Delegation). The Chapter has also mandated the Presidency Council to prepare a track work for reflection on the structures of the Congregation, in particular on the assumptions of federations, mergers, and various forms of collaboration.
On July 13, 2012, in the morning, Aula Chapter has discussed about the instrument of work submitted by the Presidential Council. In the afternoon the five committees were formed chapter: Charisma and the Common Life, Vocations, Apostolate, Economics, Structures.On July 14, 2012 the Chapter went to visit the Amalfi Coast.
On July 15, 2012, in the chapel of the College Denza, 10.30, S. Ecc.za Archbishop Antonio Di Donna, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Naples and Head of Pastoral Care, the cleric was ordained deacon Barnabite Don Domenico Vitale. He welcomed this joyful time of the General Chapter of the presence of S. Ecc.za Bishop Andrea M. Grass, like that of many brothers of the Italian Province of South Centre, their relatives and friends. The afternoon was left free by the chapter.
Ensuring the profound dedication of the Chapter of the Congregation for the common good, we rely on your prayers.
PRAYER TO THE HOLY FOUNDER FOR THE GENERAL CHAPTER
Father, look down from heaven upon your children
who call upon you on this special occasion.
With tenderness look upon those whom Divine Providence
has entrusted to a special ministry of leadership and service.
May your eyes follow them in every step,
your wise counsel enlighten them,
your hand uphold them,
your virtue make them holy.
May we all follow your call to holiness and renewal.
Father, look down from heaven and protect your family,
so that following in your footsteps
and in the spirit of St. Paul,
we may live, grow, and prosper in humility,
truth, and charity for the greater glory of God,
the good of the Church and of our congregation.
Mary, Mother of Divine Providence, pray for us. Amen.
Solemn Profession of Br. Tomasz Wiech, CRSP
on June 17, 2012
at St Anthony Zaccaria Barnabite Parish, in Warsaw, Poland
AD MULTOS ANNOS!
Zyczymy Ci obfitych Lask Bozych.
Diaconal Ordination in the Philippines:
On June 23, 2012
Bro. Rosauro Ma. Valmores y Abletes, CRSP will be ordain a deacon
Dear Friends of the Barnabite Fathers:
Greetings of Peace in the Lord!
This year from June 6 to 9 we celebrated the 115th anniversary of the canonization of our Holy Founder St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria. In his honor, we at the Barnabite Spiritual Center will hold a Forty-Hour Adoration.
We thank all the adorers and benefactors for making also this year possible
to conduct 40 hour Adoration of the Most Blessed Sacrament. God bless you all.
Please e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or call at 610.691.8648 to inform us of the time that is most convenient for you to come and spend time with Christ in a very personal way. celebrate Jesus by breaking bread together.oration beginning on June 6, 2012 (Wednesday) at 7:00 p.m. and ending on June 9, 2012 (Saturday) with a Holy Mass at 11:00 a.m. We cordially invite you all to join us in this solemn moment of prayer before the Most Blessed Sacrament.
I look forward to having you with us in this occasion when we will be pray-ing and adoring the Lord together.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Very Rev. Fr. Robert B. Kosek, CRSP
Barnabite - Provincial Superior
Schedule of the 40 Hour Adoration
June 6-9, 2012
|Barnabite Spiritual Center 4301| Hecktown Rd | Bethlehem, PA 18020|
JUNE 6 - WEDNESDAY
7:00 p.m. Mass & Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament
10:45 p.m. Night Prayer
11:00 p.m. Closing
JUNE 7 - THURSDAY
7:00 a.m. Exposition and Morning Prayers
12:15 p.m. Mass
2:00 p.m. Rosary
3:00 p.m. Chaplet of the Divine Mercy
5:30 p.m. Evening Prayer and Spiritual Reflection
7:00 p.m. TRIDUUM to St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria
10:45 p.m. Night Prayer
11:00 p.m. Closing
JUNE 8 – FRIDAY
7:00 a.m. Exposition and Morning Prayers
Noon Angelus and Rosary
3:00 p.m. Chaplet of the Divine Mercy
5:30 p.m. Evening Prayer and Spiritual Reflection
5:30 p.m. TRIDUUM to St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria
8:00 p.m. Mass
10:45 p.m. Night Prayer
11:00 p.m. Closing
JUNE 9 – SATURDAY
7:00 a.m. Exposition and Morning Prayers
10:00 a.m. Procession with the Blessed Sacrament
TRIDUUM to St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria
11:00 a.m. Mass
Did you know that on the day of St. Anthony Zaccaria’s canonization at St. Peter Basilica was used brocades for 8 kilometers (5 miles) and 1,570 lights?
After the proclamation of the two new saints, all the bells of the Roman churches rang out in celebration for an hour. Only in the afternoon was the Vatican Basilica opened to the faithful who had not been able to participate in the ceremony, while in the evening Bernini's colonnade and St. Peter's façade were illuminated with lanterns and torches for a beautiful effect. Just think that the adornments of the Basilica, planned by the architect of the Fabbrica di S. Pietro, professor Andrea Busiri, cost 240,000 lire, the equivalent of 145,000 Euros today. On the outside inscriptions had been placed on the three doors of the Basilica, while on the great frame of the main entrance there loomed the Gloria painted by Salvatore Nobili, director of the Studio del Mosaico Vaticano. Immediately visible on the inside were the grandiose arches of the apses and of the cross nave, 44 meters high. From the great arcades there hung altar hangings colored in red and stamped with stars and gold threading, with bottom fringes. Even the windows and the loges were decorated in red and gold, as were the great pillars, while the fascias of the great frames were covered in damask. In sum, there were enough brocades to cover about 8 kilometers in length! In the apse the Papal throne was erected with its majestic aedicule 12 meters high surmounted in the fornix by two colossal statues of St. Peter and St. Paul. At the end of the church, 11 meters high, the Papal coat of arms stood out between the two medallions with the portraits of the two saints.
And what to say about the lighting? On the arcades there were hung 23 candelabra with about 250 candles and in the side aisles of the cross, another two enormous candelabra weighing two tons with 450 candles each and a 10-meter diameter. Finally, along the frame of the principal nave there had been placed more that 2,570 lights. You can only imagine the acrobatics that some 350 men had to do to light everything that day. There was no lack of security and services that were indispensable for the length of the ceremonies: bathrooms for the Pope (behind the Pontifical throne), with two sanitary stations for ready access and another four distributed throughout the Basilica. About 60 firefighters kept watch to avoid any risk of a fire. For this enormous undertaking the Basilica had to be closed for five days, from May 22 through the morning of the 27th.
The 136th General Chapter will begin in Naples on July 9 and will end on July 25, 2012.
PRAYER TO THE HOLY FOUNDER FOR THE GENERAL CHAPTER
Father, look down from heaven upon your children who call upon you on this special occasion.
With tenderness look upon those whom Divine Providence has entrusted to a special ministry of leadership and service.
Fr. Cesare Tondini, CRSP
At the age of 68, in the evening of June 29, 1907, solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul, in the community of St. Charles ai Catinari in Rome, Fr. Cesare Maria Tondini de’ Quarenghi was dying after 51 years as a Barnabite religious, concluding a very intense and singular life, characterized by geniality and generosity, nourished by a profound Pauline spirituality. He had been born in Lodi on January 11, 1839.
In the Acts of the community, Fr. Matteo M. Marioni wrote: “The very reverend Fr. Cesare Tondini, Procurator General, has succumbed to sudden and unexpected death. A man gifted with great piety and doctrine, has worked a lot especially for the union of the Greek-Ruthen (Russian) Church with the Roman-Catholic Church. After the death of Fr. Luigi Cacciari, January 15, 1905, on February 15 he had been elected as his successor of Procurator General. However, he was already sick with pulmonary tuberculosis, therefore there was no hope that he could carry on this office for a long time. Anyway, every day, and until his death, he kept busy with his studies, nor did he go off until ha had completed, as he desired, the canticle in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary which he published in the magazine Messenger of the Sacred Heart with the title: The soul of Mary in the Magnificat canticle. We are all convinced that Maria, chosen by him as the most loving mother of his first youth and in whose honor for many years he had found and written new titles, has welcomed him with affection in her maternal womb, on that Saturday dedicated to her.”
At the conclusion of his articulated study on the Magnificat, which he had started in Constantinople, finished in Rome and published between 1906 and 1907 in twelve issues of theMessenger, Fr. Tondini has reserved a last humble surprise, with a blessing for the Jesuits: “I do not know how many times in Russia and among the Greeks I, a poor Barnabite, have been taken as a Jesuit; but this should happen many times, nor I would be surprised if even today I would be thought as such. It is true that times this has caused me some nuisances, but they are nuisances which I bless because they have tempered my will. So, may God and the most blessed Virgin shower upon the Company of Jesus the choicest blessings.”
A most noble spirit
He had been in Constantinople for four years as chaplain of the Sisters of Our Lady of Sion when, on March 20, 1905, he reached Rome, destined to St. Charles ai Catinari community. The superior was Fr. Giovanni Vincenzo M. Siciliani, and members of the community were also Fr. Gregorio M. Almerici, who had been his companion in the novitiate and confidant, and Gregorij ?ualov. His health was in a very miserable condition as if he was consumed after a life spent on a most intense rhythm always committed with tenacity and dedication to various activities and tasks in the most diverse and not easy situations.
His diaries, kept very faithfully since his formation years, his large correspondence, beside his many publications, give us the impression that we are facing not a common Barnabite and for sure a genial one. There are some expressions by Fr. Giovanni Semeria who had known Fr. Tondini as a student, that define him well: “A most noble spirit, most active, resolute as few in his resolutions… A most singular man… polyglot, a reasonable poet, easy writer, clear, philosopher, enjoying preaching… obeying to his eminently Pauline spirit…”
An ecumenical curiosity. On his part, Fr. Tondini, who had a great esteem for Fr. Semeria, in a letter of January 5, 1900, written from Ambarlia (Bulgaria) to Father General Luigi M. Ferrari, will affirm: “I have read and admired the Twenty Five Years of the History of the rising Christianity (Rome, 1900), by Fr. Semeria. A true masterpiece. If he was pope, Fr. Semeria would bring about the union!”
A wandering Barnabite: in dialogue with everybody
He was in Paris, Stockholm, Moscow, Petersburg, Cristiania (Olso), London, Malines, Vienna, Jerusalem, Constantinople, in Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia, Bosnia, Erzegovina, among religious, simple faithful, workers, magnates, religious and civil authorities of any order and grade, Christians of different confessions; a lover of being in contact and always in dialogue: we could call him a wandering but most obedient Barnabite, always keeping in contact with his Superiors through correspondence; an outstanding religious, animated by a great love for the Church and the Congregation, sustained especially by a profound certitude, that is, to be guided by hand by the Virgin Mother of God, living every day under her protection and constantly invoking her to be able to faithfully respond to his special vocation, until the end. His singular experience “would deserve,” Fr. Semeria wrote, “a beautiful, not easy biography,” accurate and documented, in need of long years of patient work for anyone who would take up the task.
The dream of a lover of Russia
Again, as Fr. Semeria wrote, Fr. Tondini “dreamed only one thing throughout his life, the union of the Russian Church with the Roman Church…, the end of the great schism of the East, a dream he had inherited from Fr. ?ualov, a dream which today is much more alive than then. At that time he was almost alone. The goal seemed so far away that was judged a utopia. He was a lover of Russia to the full… To reach this purpose he tried the most varied and direct ways…” In his diary Fr. Tondini had written: “The conversion of Russia… This thought is my life!” It is simply amazing how up-to-date these themes and resolutions are today, although with a different interpretation and finality, in the delicate context of the present Catholic-Orthodox theological dialogue and the relationships among the Churches, characterized by a respect for the legitimate and enriching diversities, according to the Counciliar guidelines. Always aware that it is not up to us to known the times and moments God has reserved for his choice, we entrust the whole to his inscrutable designs, persevering in prayer and in the yearning for the reestablishment of the full and visible Christian communion.
Holocaust victim of God at 23
Fr. Semeria had arrived at defining Fr. Tondini as one “destined to let the Catholics to love Russia, and Russia Catholicism.” In fact, when 23, the year of his priestly ordination (Monza, February 2, 1862), he had offered his life for this cause, as it can be seen in the following passages taken from his diary written in Monza, in St. Mary’s of the Angels, which deserve our admiration. We note that 1862 is the year of the approval of the Prayer Association for the conversion of Russia by Pious IX (September 2), and of Fr. Tondini’s first assignment to Paris in the hose founded by Fr. ?ualov (1857), his inspirer and model for his love for Russia. The attached church, now demolished, was dedicated to St. Paul.
What I have just mentioned is the crucial element which, already when very young, is going to mark the whole of his extraordinary existence as a Cleric Regular of St. Paul, constituting his essential style and true meaning, with a very clear determination. In the following quotations, very fundamental to understand him, we can detect the whole soul and vibrant spirit of Fr. Tondini’s love for the Church and the Congregation. It is a duty to remember him with veneration, one hundred years from his death, almost to hear from his living voice his exemplar ardor, always alive and fiery, and so touched at least the hem of his clock, asking for his intercession, and imitate him just a little. To remember him again today and to read over again his words for sure will not be in vain.
For the Church and for the Congregation
June 27, 1862, Friday: Most Sacred Heart of Jesus.
From morning to evening I am thinking of God. To the thought of the triumph of the Most Holy Immaculate Mary and the conversion of Russia, another one, most dear to me, is added, and for its realization I have consecrated myself, with full enthusiasm, as a victim of holocaust to God. The thought of contributing, whatever I can, is this: may in the Congregation relive, where it is off, the fullness of the spirit of the Holy Founders. I do love my dear Congregation, I love it a lot, I love it with tenderness. For its good, I have consecrated myself to God, ready for a life of suffering, opprobrium, sacrifices. And because I truly love her in God, I cannot dissimulate that little human spirit that slowly has entered in some individual, anyway admirable for beautiful and solid virtues…
I think of nothing else but my total annihilation for God, for the triumph of Mary in the conversion of Russia, for the return in the Congregation of the whole of t. Paul’s spirit, of our Founders… Not only I, but many other Fathers long for this (General) Chapter to be most fruitful with holy resolutions aiming at forming in every Barnabite an instrument able to serve God and any way and wherever He wants… For some time I had already manifested my dear secret to p. M. (Pio Mauri), still a deacon. What a beautiful soul! How we have prayed together from the heart! Our talks are all about God. A life of suffering love; behold what God is making us longing for. We have offered ourselves totally to God, promising to become saints…
The two following texts, including the underlining, were written by the young Fr. Tondini in Monza novitiate, during the retreat preached by Fr. Paul M. Stub (August 18-27, 1862), a convert from Lutheranism. The approval by Fr. Stub was followed by the one by Fr. Ambrogio M. Gaspari (1809-1865), his master of novitiate: “God inspired me with that total offering of myself as described in the page 93, entirely approved by Fr. Sub and which I will show also to Fr. Gaspari. Fr. Stub recommended very much humility…”
To the honor and glory of God
August 23, 1862. Ad honorem et gloriam Dei.
God inspired me, I promised, to want to be a victim in union with Jesus Christ to obtain at any cost from God “the triumph of the Immaculate Blessed Virgin in the conversion of Russia before I will die, and the sanctification and salvation of all the Barnabites present and future.”
Victim implies that I offer to God, especially at the elevation of the Chalice, my sanctification, my life, my blood for these most holy purposes, in union with the offering of Jesus Christ.
Sanctification – I have decided that I want to be a saint, to reach that level of holiness that God wants from me, without agreements, without limits.
- perfect submission to God’s will, either manifested through obedience, or through events. Even my smallest actions will all be the ones God wants, and in the way God wants, so that in the evening I will do the examen, and the conscience will answer to have done in everything only the divine will.
- to abhor and flight from any conscious venial sin, and study to fly away also from any imperfection.
To obtain this purity of heart in front of God I will have in everything frequent acts of contrition (exmen de occulis et alienis) and of love of God and of humility. This last I will ask from God in the morning, in the Rosary and in the evening. To avoid the great stumbling blocks, especially pride, I make the solemn promise to God to never do anything on my own, but submitting all to my spiritual director, to continue in every Mass to beg God from the heart not to look and to find but Him, to keep myself always very ready not to think about Russia at the slightest indication by my spiritual director.
Life – I have decided to consecrate every instant of my life to these most sublime ends. This implies:
- To direct, from now on, every action of my life toward them. Either the action is directed toward them by itself, fine; or rather I implore the merit toward this end.
- From now on I want to make use of any free time and action I would have for nothing else but to obtain this great work. Therefore, I renounce, from now on, any genial studies, useless trips, prolonged vacations behind what is convenient. Having leftover time I will use it all in actions directed toward this work or studies or at least prayer.
- From now on I commit myself, with the permission of my superiors, to continue with great alacrity in the work I have started until its perfect completion, never stopping, except: the command by the spiritual director about the thought and the affection of the heart, the command of the legitimate superior about the very work. No other power on earth, no obstacle, no travesty I want, with the help of God, to stop me on a road where God only has put me with so many signs of his divine will, so that I may continue toward its accomplishment, and I would not know any other way through which I could know the divine will here on earth. If I had against every man, every Barnabite too, in so far as the spiritual director tells me GO, with the help of God I want to challenge and the world, and hell, and everything. In te Domine speravi.
- From now on I will prepare myself for the great work, besides with the sanctification of myself, giving my free time to appropriate studies, since the great work is the theme of my meditations; trying to purify more and more my heart. At the same time, I will prepare myself getting used, little by little and with the permission of the spiritual director, to the hard life in sleep and in food and other life commodities. I will never waist a little time. The mission is very high, the time scarce, perhaps I am mistaking, but it seems to me that God makes me feel that it should be accomplished very soon, in a week of years.
- I do not give myself any rest, but unceasingly I will work as much as I can to draw souls to God in any way and with any skill, because the zeal must also be smart and self-assured.
Blood – What counts is that I offer myself as a holocaust to God so that He would give less sign of his justice, giving me instead with sorrow the patience so that I will obtain the desired graces. A holy priest used to tell me: “God wants some sacrifice from you. (Paratum cor meum Deo. Ecce ego, mitte me. Tu perfice quod coepisti. Da ut velim, comple opus tuum).
- In safeguarding the senses and the mortification I want to keep the rules of the true Christian temperance. This is the least that I promise to God, obliging myself from now on to never fail in this, rather to grow according to the rules of the spiritual director.
- I will embrace with patience of the heart the crosses God will send me, either corporal or spiritual, remembering that they are the proof that God is granting my prayer. And I will be very careful that in doing this prayer the lips will not be in dissonance with the heart.
- When offended, humbled and similar situations, I will imitate Jesus Christ. I will say aMagnificat, in thanksgiving, in the memento of the Holy Mass together with all the dying souls of that day, etc., I will recommend those who give me the opportunity to be like Jesus Christ.
- In putting on the sacred vestments before going to Celebrate, I will accompany with true feeling the action of dressing up with thoughts analogous to the different parts of the passion of Jesus Christ, begging him to render me similar to Him. (Quos praescivit et praedestinavit conformes fieri imagini filii sui).
- About looking for mortifications, I will follow the norms of the spiritual director so that I will not stumble on pride.
- My favorite meditation will be the passion of Jesus Christ.
- Since I do not have the courage to mortify myself, from the heart I will ask God to make up for it sending me with patience the pains apt to make me feel a victim acceptable for the great work.
- It is my intention, in offering my blood, that God would make me worthy to give it in union wit the one of Jesus Christ for this purpose.
I can affirm with certitude that the act of a total offering of his life done by Fr. Tondini, was written during that retreat in Monza, as it is shown by the beginning of the text of June 27, 1862, of the following, and also by the context. The original is in Latin, without title or date, written on a loose piece of paper, vertically folded in two. For sure, he used to keep it in his breviary so that he could repeat it three times a day. Also Fr. ?uvalov used to repeat three times a day the total offering as Fr. Tondini reports, always for the same purpose, as it had been suggested by Pius IX during the memorable audience of 1857.
The total offering
I, aware of being a sinner and that what good I have or I have done is a gift from God, fearing my hidden sins and those of others, filled to the brim with God’s greatest benefits and at the same time most ungrateful for them, having made a bad use of them, anyway filled with confidence in God through the merits of Jesus Christ, of his goodness, as well as the protection of Mary and the Saints, therefore, sure that I will be heard and with the merit of obedience to the director of my soul, I offer my whole self, without limits, as a victim to God in union with the merits and the blood of Jesus Christ, to implore at least the triumph of the Immaculate Blessed Virgin and the sanctification and the eternal salvation of all the present and future Barnabites, as well as of the numberless other souls according to the pleasure of the most sweet Mary, my Mother; victim, I say, in the sanctification of life and blood, that is, of pain. My Jesus, make me so much saint as humble, make me similar to you in patience and in suffering, and if because of my weakness I do not dare to punish myself as I should, you yourself, giving me patience, punish me so that I might be a true victim as I desire, like you have been. My Jesus, give me a Catholic heart, your heart, a heart burning with love for you and Mary; answer me as I pray to grant me the graces that I need, both for myself as well for others to whom I am obligated or I love. May, then, my heart be united to you, day and night; may I walk always in front of youloving and in the joy of the Holy Spirit, so that I might be perfect. May I despise the world and may I care to be despised by it, and may I always act in obedience for supernatural motives, and may I not know the prudence of the flesh. Give me light and active zeal; give me a heart, which will trust nothing in myself and instead would trust in everything you who comfort me. Grant me to cooperate the way you want with your graces; make me perfect, you who from this stone can generate a son of Abraham, so that I could in whole sincerity of heart say with your spouse, in an overflowing recognition, “To suffer, not to die,” as a rue triumph of the omnipotent love of Mary.
Crazy and Victim
Day of October 14, 1862. My God, if it is your will, if it is for your glory that I should have no comfort of any kind down here, that I would pass through it mocked and scorned, that I might even become crazy, your victim for the triumph of Mary, for the sanctification and the salvation of all the Barnabites…
As we set ourselves to live intensely, also in the ecumenical dimension, the Year of St. Paul (June 2008-2009) announced by Pope Benedict XVI on June 28, 2007, in the Basilica of St. Paul outside the Walls the expression of Fr. Tondini, eminent Pauline spirit, who with intent wanted to offer his life “for the return in the Congregation of the whole spirit of St. Paul,” are of a great stimulus and very meaningful indeed.
That is what we honestly wish as “sons of such a glorious Father,” according to the words of the Holy Founder.