Sunday, February 14, 2010

Sunday in the Year for Priests

From St. John Maria Vianney we learn a deep connection between the priesthood and the sacrifice: He taught his parishioners: “If one wants to destroy religion, he begins to attack the priest, because where there is no priest, there is also no sacrifice, and because where there is no sacrifice, there is also no religion any longer.”
(Excerpt from Opus Angelorum-to view the website click here)

The Cure of Ars was subjected to extraordinary diabolic interventions...he was subjected to what demonologists call infestation, that is, situations in which devils reveal their presence by troublesome vexations, which are more terrifying than painful...

He himself has related the beginning of these unbelievable persecutions which were to continue for many years:
"The first time the devil came to torment me was one night at nine o'clock, just as I was about to go to bed. Three loud knocks resounded on my courtyard door, as if someone wanted to break it in with an enormous sledge hammer. I immediately opened my window and asked: Who is it?...But I saw nothing and went quietly to bed, recommending myself to God, to the Blessed Virgin Mary, and to the holy angels. I was not yet asleep when three more knocks made me jump. These were more violent than the first, and struck not against the outside door but against the one at the foot of the stairs leading to my room. I got up and cried out a second time: Who is there? No one answered...

 Now Father Vianney was subject to fear like anybody else. But he overcame it. One of the persons whose help he sought in the first days to protect him was none other than the village wheelwright, Andrew Verchere.

He reported the following: "That night I went to the rectory. I talked with the Cure until ten o'clock, meanwhile warming myself. 'Let us go to bed,' he said at last. He let me have his room and went into the one next to it. I did not go to sleep. About one o'clock in the morning I heard the handle and latch of the outside door being violently shaken. At the same time I could hear heavy blows against the same door, while inside the rectory there was a thunderous noise as of the rolling of several carriages...The rectory was swaying as if from an earthquake. "'So you're afraid?' Monsieur le Cure asked. " 'No, I said, I am not afriad but I feel my legs giving way. The rectory is going to collapse.' "What do you think it is?' " 'I think it is the devil.'
From the Remarkable Cure of Ars by Michele de Saint Pierre

Peace be with you!

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