Wednesday, February 28, 2018

CONTRITION: The Golden Key of Paradise

I recommend all my readers to read this little booklet in order to learn the secret of contrition that might very well save your soul from damnation. As one Amazon commentator put it: "I found this little pamphlet to be the greatest little pamphlet, second only to Holy Scripture!!! Absolutely astounding! Fantastic manual on how to go to confession and properly dispose yourself. A must read for every person that knows they will one day pass away."


At first sight of this little book, that bears the high-sounding title of 'The Golden Key of Paradise,' perhaps, dear reader, you will be somewhat curious to know whether its contents are as good as its title. Perhaps you are inclined to shrug your shoulders and feel as you do when you see advertised marvelous and infallible cures for all the ills that flesh is heir to.

No, be not deceived; this is a genuine key, and one you can easily manipulate. It is Perfect Contrition, which for the forty centuries before the coming of Christ was the only means of salvation for all those who had committed sin, and which even now is destined to save myriads of souls. Look at its marvelous power. It can open Heaven every day, and every moment of each day. Especially is it efficacious if at the moment of death you cannot have at your side the priest, the dispenser of the divine mercies, an absence unfortunately only too common nowadays, on account of the number of sudden deaths. In this case Perfect Contrition will he the last key which, with the grace of God, will open Heaven to you. But it is necessary to learn during life how to use this key at the moment of death. How many souls that otherwise would have been lost for all eternity have, by means of an Act of True Contrition, opened Paradise for themselves. The learned and holy Cardinal Franzehin said 'If I could wander through the country preaching the Word of God, my favourite theme would be Perfect Contrition. Golden words, dear reader, with which I fully agree; adding, however, that I would wish to do the same from the pulpits in the cities, where the occasions of sin are greater and the dangers to one's soul are innumerable.

THE Author, by a happy inspiration called this little book 'The Golden Key of Paradise.' And, in fact, our true home, yours and mine, and of everybody else, is Heaven. This world in which we now live is not our true home. So true is this that, sooner or later, Death will drive us hence and send us to that Home Eternal. Now, in order to enter into the home of true and everlasting happiness, Heaven, we need a key with which to open the door. And in this little book you will find that key—a key of purest gold, fashioned by a zealous priest from the teachings of the Gospel and of the Catholic Church. This key is called Perfect Contrition.

Now, if Perfect Contrition is the Key to Heaven, it naturally follows that everybody should possess one, and know how to use it. And so, whoever you may be, or whatever may be your condition and state in life, this book is written specially for you.

Are you a priest? This pamphlet will call to your mind beautiful practical truths, the importance of which you may never have considered, and as you turn over these pages you will feel constrained to impart to your flock the wonderful knowledge that is yours.

Are you in a religious community? What peace can you not procure for yourself by frequently using this key.

Are you the father or mother of a family? Then accept this precious key to open the Gates of Heaven for yourself; and leave it as an heirloom to your children; they will thank you for it for all eternity.

Are you a teacher? Teach your charges the frequent use of this mystical key. Some day they will appreciate it.

Whatever you are, learn to use this golden key, and, should any of the thousand disasters so frequent nowadays overtake you, you have at hand the means of saving your soul.

Are you a good Catholic? Use this key frequently, for it led the saints to the apex of sanctity.

Are you a sinner? This key is made specially for you, for it shows you how to reopen the gates that you have closed by sin. I will go even further. Are you a heretic, an infidel in good faith, or one who, knowing his error, is now at death's door, and has no time to embrace the True Faith or reconcile himself with God? Fortunate are you if this golden key should have come into your hands. It can save you from Hell and open Heaven for you. Fly, fly then, little book, like a butterfly with golden wings, enter into the houses of the rich and of the poor; go into the schools and workshops; fly over mountains and plains, over land and sea; find your way into the steamers and trains; penetrate the mines; ascend to the aeroplane in the clouds; where ever sin and death may be, there bring the light and consolation that are contained in your modest pages.

Key to Heaven : What is Perfect Contrition?

FIRST of all, what is contrition? Later on we will see about that word 'perfect.' Contrition is a grief of the soul, a detestation of sin committed. It must be accompanied by a firm resolution of amending one's life and of sinning no more.

The Soul's Sorrow

Now, for real contrition, three conditions are necessary—it must be internal, universal, and supernatural. (a) It must be internal or inward. It must come from the depths of the heart, and does not consist of acts pronounced by the lips without reflection or thought. It is not necessary to manifest our sorrow by sighs and tears. These may be signs of contrition, but they are not essential or necessary parts of it. Contrition rests in the soul and in the firm resolution of leaving our sin and returning to God.

(b) Our contrition must be universal—i.e., it must be extended to all the sins, at least to all the mortal sins, that we have committed.

(c) Lastly, it must be supernatural, which means that it must be founded on some motive of faith—e.g., on Hell, on Purgatory, on Heaven, on God, or on some similar motive. Our contrition would be natural, and thereby useless, if it were founded on some purely natural motive of interest or reason—as, for example, if we were sorry because our sins brought us some illness or dishonour or pecuniary loss. But if our sorrow is founded on some truth of our Faith—for example, the loss of Heaven or the fear of Hell—it is supernatural and meritorious.

Now, supernatural contrition may be either imperfect or perfect; and here we return to Perfect Contrition. Contrition is imperfect when we are sorry through fear of God. It is perfect when we are sorry through love of Him. In the first case we are sorry for having offended God because we fear His just anger and punishment; in the second case, we are sorry because sin offends God, Who is so infinitely good and lovable.

Perfect Contrition springs from the perfect love of God, and our love for God is perfect when we love Him because He is infinitely perfect, infinitely beautiful, infinitely good in Himself, or because, by His innumerable gifts to us, He has shown His love for us. On the other hand, our love for God is imperfect when we love Him because we hope for some benefit from Him. But should this something be Himself in so much as He is our Supreme Good, then this would be perfect love.

From this you will clearly see that when our love is imperfect we think principally of ourselves, of the benefits we have received; whereas, if it is perfect, we think principally of God—of the goodness of Him Who enriches us with His benefits. When our love is imperfect we love the gifts we have received; when it is perfect we love the Giver of these gifts, not so much for the gifts He gives as for the love and goodness that these gifts manifest in Him.

Sorrow Comes from Love

Now, sorrow or contrition springs from love, and so it follows that our contrition will be perfect when we repent of our sins through the perfect love of God—i.e., when we repent, because by sinning we offend God, Who is infinitely good and perfect and beautiful in Himself, and Who loves us so much. Our contrition will be imperfect if we repent through fear of God, because by sinning we have lost Heaven or merited the pains of Purgatory or Hell. When our sorrow is imperfect we think above all about ourselves, and of the punishment that our sins will bring on us in the next life in much the same way as a child is sorry for some fault because it fears a thrashing. With perfect contrition we think principally about God, about His greatness, His goodness, His beauty, His Love, all of which attributes we offend in sinning, and for which sins the God-Man, our Adorable Saviour, suffered so much. It is like a child repenting of a fault because it has grieved its parents, who are so good and loving, and have done so much for it. One other little example will help to explain all this much better. After St. Peter denied his Divine Master he thought of his sin, and, 'going out, wept bitterly.' Why did he weep? Perhaps for the shame he would feel in front of the other Apostles? If this was the reason, then his sorrow was purely natural and without merit for Heaven. Perhaps he feared being deprived of his dignity as an Apostle and Prince of the Apostles, or perhaps he feared losing Heaven. These certainly would be worthy motives, but still his sorrow would be imperfect. No, No! Peter wept and repented because he had offended his beloved Master, Who was so good, so holy, so worthy of his love; he wept because he had repaid that love with the blackest ingratitude, and, as a consequence, his contrition was perfect, his sin was forgiven. With this golden key he had again reopened the doors of Heaven, which he had closed a moment before by his triple denial. And, dear reader, have you not as much reason to detest your own sins? Certainly. The benefits you have received are more numerous than the hairs on your head, and for each of these gifts you should exclaim with St. John, 'Let us love God Who has first loved us.'

The Love of God

And how has God loved us? 'I have loved you,' He says, 'with an eternal love. I have had pity on you and drawn you to Myself.' (Jer. xxxi., 3.) So He has loved us with an eternal love. Right from eternity, before you were born—aye, even before this world was made or the angels themselves were created. He turned towards you one of those loving looks that pierce the very heart; for you He created the heavens and the earth, for you He prepared a body and a soul with all the tenderness of a mother preparing for the coming of her child. It is God Who gave you life and keeps you in life; it is He Who from day to day gives you all those natural goods that you enjoy. Such a thought should be sufficient to induce the very pagans to the perfect love of God. But how much more reason have not you, a Christian, a Catholic, to love Him with a perfect love—you who experience a signal proof of His goodness and love, for 'He has pity on you'? You, in consequence of the fall of our First Parents, were condemned with the rest of mankind, but your Heavenly Father sent His only Son to be your Saviour and to redeem you with His Precious Blood. During His Agony in the Garden He thought of you. He thought of you as His Blood flowed from the wounds caused by the cruel scourges and crown of thorns. It was of you He thought as He laboured under the heavy Cross up the hill of Calvary. It was of you He thought and for you He suffered as He expired in shame and agony on the Cross. Yes, He thought of you with as tender a love as if you were the only person in the world, so that you can truly say with St. Paul, 'He loved me and gave Himself up to death for me.' What conclusion can you draw from all this? This, and this only—'Let us love God who has first loved us.'

Besides, God drew you to Himself by Baptism, the first and most important grace in this life, and by the Church into whose bosom you were then admitted. How many there are who find the True Church only after trials and sacrifices of every kind! How many, again, who never know it! But through the love and mercy of Almighty God you were endowed with the gift of the True Faith in your cradle. He continues to draw you to Himself by means of the Sacraments and of innumerable other graces, both internal and external. You are, as it were, submerged in an ocean—in the ocean of divine love and mercy. Not satisfied with all these proofs of His love, He wishes to crown all these favours by placing you in Heaven, near to Himself, where you will be eternally happy. What return can you make for all this love? Nothing but love can repay love, and so do not all these proofs of His infinite love force us to love Him and to exclaim with St. Paul, 'Caritas Christi urget nos'? The love of Christ constrains us to love Him in return.

Now, let us examine a little. How have you corresponded to the love of a God so loving and so lovable? Undoubtedly, with ingratitude and sin. But do you not now repent of such ingratitude? Ah! I have no doubt but that at this moment your heart burns with a desire of repairing such ingratitude by means of a whole-hearted love. If such is the case, then at this very moment you have Perfect Contrition—that contrition, viz., that is founded on the love of God and is called Perfect Contrition, or Contrition of Love.

But this contrition may be of a still higher degree and consist in loving God simply because He is infinitely perfect, infinitely glorious, and worthy of being loved above every other thing, independent of His mercies towards us. Let us make a comparison. Astronomers tell us that in the firmament there are stars as large and as brilliant as the sun, but so far away that they are invisible to the naked eye. Now, though these stars give us neither light nor warmth, are they not as worthy of our admiration as the sun itself? And suppose, now, that man had never experienced any benefits from that eternal Star—the Love of God; suppose that Almighty God had not created the earth or any living creature; He would not on this account be any less wise, less grand, less beautiful, less glorious, less worthy of love, because in Himself and through Himself He is the Supreme Good. This is what we mean when we recite the words, 'I detest my sins above every other evil because they displease Thee, my God, Who for Thine infinite goodness art so deserving of all my love.' Reflect for a moment on the love of God—above all, think of the manifestation of this love in the sufferings of Our Divine Saviour. By this means you will easily understand it, and, like a fiery dart, it will pierce and inflame your heart. Behold the practical way of exciting yourself to Perfect Contrition.

It is related in the life of the Curé d'Ars that on one occasion a lady, a perfect stranger to him, asked him to pray for her husband, a careless Catholic, who had just died suddenly and without receiving the Sacraments. 'He was so careless, Father,' she said, weeping; 'he did not go to his duties, and whatever will become of him?' 'Madam,' replied the saintly priest, 'do you not remember the bouquet of flowers be picked every Saturday to decorate Our Lady's altar? In return Our Blessed Lady obtained for him the grace to make an act of Perfect Contrition before dying, and he is saved.' The Curé had never before seen that lady, nor did he know her husband, but it was a fact that every Saturday he picked that bunch of flowers. Our Lady, in return for that very small token of love he showed her, placed in his hands at that supreme moment the Golden Key of Paradise.


First of all, we must bear in mind that Perfect Contrition is a grace—a great grace—from God. We should therefore constantly pray for it. Ask for it, not only when you wish to make an Act of Contrition, but often during the day. It should be the object of your most ardent desires. Repeat often, 'My God! give me perfect sorrow for my sins.' And if you sincerely mean what you say, Our Lord will hear your prayer.

Before the Crucifix

Besides this, here is an easy way of making an Act of Contrition. Kneel down before a crucifix in a church or in your room, or, if you cannot do this, imagine yourself to be in the presence of Jesus Christ, and, while looking at His wounds, think for a few moments, and then repeat these or similar words, 
'Who is This nailed to a Cross? It is Jesus—my God and Saviour. And see how He suffers! His Body covered with wounds and blood; His Soul submerged in anguish and humiliations. Why does He suffer? For the sins of mankind, and so for mine also. In the abyss of His torments He is thinking of me. He is suffering for me. He is making reparation for my sins. 'Remain there at the foot of the Cross while the Blood of your Saviour falls drop by drop on your soul. Ask yourself how you have corresponded with these proofs of love. Call to mind your past sins, and, forgetting for a moment both Heaven and Hell, repent because your sins have reduced your Saviour to so pitiable a state. Promise Him that you will not crucify Him again, and then slowly and fervently repeat the Act of Contrition. Better still, repeat those words of sorrow that will spontaneously rise up in your heart, now softened by grace and filled with a holy bitterness.

Three Visits

It will not be out of place to call to mind here what St. Charles Borromeo taught his penitents when they went to Confession. 'Do you wish,' he used to say, 'to know an easy way of exciting yourselves to true sorrow for your sins? Make three little visits—the first above, the second below, the third in the middle. Your visit up above will show you Paradise, which you have renounced for some empty pleasure, for some sinful thought, or word or act. The displeasure that will arise in your heart at the thought of this loss will be good attrition, or imperfect contrition, and in Confession will suffice to wash away your sins.

'Your visit below will show you that frightful place in which you would be now if God had exercised His justice—that place where you would for ever suffer the torment of fire, far from your true home, which is Heaven. The sorrow arising from this consideration is also excellent, and sufficient in Confession.

'Your third visit will show you Christ crucified and dying for you on Calvary amid pains and insults of every description. The knowledge that the Crucified One is Infinite Goodness Itself, your greatest Benefactor, Whom, instead of loving, you have insulted and crucified, will awaken in your heart sentiments of love and sorrow that will wipe away your sins even before you enter the confessional.'

Dear reader, remember these three visits of St. Charles, not only when you go to Confession, but each time you wish to excite yourself to Perfect Contrition.


No doubt, it is more difficult to make an act of Perfect Contrition than an Imperfect one, which suffices when we go to Confession. But still, there is no one who, if he sincerely wishes it, cannot, with the grace of God, make an act of Perfect Contrition. Sorrow is in the will, not in the senses or feelings. All that is needed is that we repent because we love God above everything else; that is all. True it is that Perfect Contrition has its degrees, but it is none the less perfect because it does not reach the intensity and sublimity of the sorrow of St. Peter, of St. Mary Magdalene, or of St. Aloysius. Such a degree is very desirable, but is by no means necessary. A lesser degree, but, provided it proceeds from the love of God, and not through fear of His punishments, is quite sufficient. And it is very consoling to remember that for the 4000 years before the coming of Christ the only means sinners had of obtaining pardon was this same Perfect Contrition. There was no Sacrament of Penance in those days. Even today for thousands—aye, for millions—of pagans, of non-Catholics, and of Catholics, too, who have no time to call a priest to their bedside, the only means of pardon and salvation is an act of Perfect Contrition [and conversion].

Now, if it is true that God does not wish the death of a sinner, it follows that He does not wish to impose on His creatures a contrition or sorrow beyond their powers, but one that is within the reach of everyone. And so, if millions of poor creatures who, through no fault of their own, live and die outside the True Fold, if these can obtain the grace of Perfect Contrition [non-Catholics must be converted to the true faith and baptized before their death in order to attain salvation, and this is possible before death by a special grace of infused faith and knowledge of the mysteries necessary to be believed for salvation], do you imagine, dear reader, that it will be difficult for you—you who enjoy the happiness of being a Christian and a Catholic, and so are capable of receiving much greater graces than they—you who are far better instructed in things divine than the poor infidels are?

But I dare to go even further. Often, very often, without even thinking of it, you have Perfect Contrition for your sins. For example, when you hear Mass devoutly or make the Stations of the Cross properly; when you reflect before your crucifix or an image of the Sacred Heart. What is more, every time you say the 'Our Father,' in the first three petitions you make three acts of perfect charity, each of which is sufficient to cancel every sin from your soul.

Very often, a few words suffice to express the most ardent love and the most profound sorrow—for instance, the little ejaculations, 'My Jesus, mercy,' 'My God and my All,' 'My God, I love Thee above all things,' 'My God, have mercy on me, a poor sinner.' Aided by the grace of God (and God has promised to give to all who ask), it is by no means difficult to make an Act of Contrition. Take the case of David, who for one curious look fell into the sin of adultery, and then of murder. Having committed these sins, he lived on quite unconcerned about the state of his soul till the prophet Nathan came to reprove him. And this reproach induced David to make an act of Perfect Contrition in a few words, 'Pec-cavi Domino' ('I have sinned against the Lord'). So efficacious was his contrition that the prophet, inspired by God, exclaimed, 'The Lord has forgiven you.'

Take, again, the case of Mary Magdalen—a public sinner. She did not even say one word, but simply wept at the Feet of Jesus. Jesus saw the sorrow in her heart, and, turning to her, said: 'Woman! because thou hast loved much thy sins are forgiven thee.' See, then, how little is needed—only to love God above everything. And love demands neither time nor trouble; it suffices to think of Jesus crucified, for it is impossible then not to love Him, and to be sorry for the sins by which we have crucified Him.

Remember the good thief—a robber condemned to death—and yet for those few words spoken from his heart, 'Lord, remember me when Thou shalt come into Thy Kingdom,' he was immediately promised Heaven by Christ Himself: 'Today, thou shalt be with Me in Paradise.'

Lastly, look at St. Peter, who denied his Master three times. Jesus looked at him; Peter said not a single word, but, 'going out, wept bitterly.' He was forgiven; he was chosen by Christ to be His first successor on earth—the Prince of the Apostles—and to-day is one of the most glorious saints in Heaven.

Dear readers, should we ever have the misfortune to offend God, let us give a look at the tabernacle where Jesus is palpitating with love for us, or let us think of Calvary. Our hearts will be touched. We will repent. We shall be forgiven and saved.


Forgiveness Even Before Confession

Suppose the person before he makes an act of Perfect Contrition is in the state of mortal sin. Immediately, before even he goes to Confession—so long as he has the intention of going when opportunity offers—all his sins are forgiven. Not only is the eternal punishment of Hell remitted, but all his merits, which he had lost by sinning, are again restored to him. And if the person making this Act of Contrition is in the state of grace, his soul is strengthened against future temptations, his venial sins are forgiven, his purgatory is lessened, and the love of God increases in his soul. Behold the wonderful effects of the mercy of God produced in the soul of the Christian, and even in that of the pagan in good faith, by an act of Perfect Contrition.

Contrition Does Not Dispense With Confession

Perhaps in reading this you will be surprised and inclined to say, 'I can well understand that at the moment of death we should ask for the grace of Perfect Contrition, and that at that supreme moment it produces these wonderful effects, but I can scarcely credit that it has this power at all times, and when we are well and strong.' And yet all this is perfectly true; it is as solid as the Rock on which the Church is built. In short, it is as certain as the Word of God. In the Council of Trent, the Church, under the assistance of the Holy Ghost, declared 'that Perfect Contrition—i.e., that which proceeds from the love of God—justifies man and reconciles him with God even before the reception of the Sacrament of Penance.' Of course, it is understood that such a person, if a Catholic, has at least the implicit intention of going to Confession. Now, the Council of Trent says nothing about the moment of death—it makes no distinction of time or circumstances, and so always and at any moment during life this golden key opens the gates of Paradise. This declaration of Holy Church is simply the explanation of those words of Our Divine Saviour, 'If anyone loves Me' (and no one can love Him without being sorry for having offended Him)—'if anyone loves Me, My Father will love Him, and We will come and dwell in him.' Now, since God cannot dwell in a soul stained with mortal sin, it follows that Perfect Contrition, or the Contrition of Charity, as it is called, banishes sin from the soul.

Such has always been the teaching of the Church, and when a heretic denied it he was condemned by Rome. If, as we have already seen, Perfect Contrition produced these wonderful effects in the Old Law— the Law of Fear and Justice—with what greater reason should it not do so in the New Law—the Law of Mercy and Love?

But, seeing how efficacious Perfect Contrition is, seeing how it cleanses the soul even before Confession, you may be inclined to say, 'Why, then, go to Confession at all? Was not Confession instituted by Jesus Christ for the remission of sins? And if Perfect Contrition remits sin even before Confession, where is the necessity of Confession?' This objection or difficulty is answered in the Catechism: 'If we fall into sin we should make an Act of Contrition and go to Confession as soon as we can.' And the reason is because, though Perfect Contrition produces the same effects as Confession, it does not do so independently of Confession. Confession is the ordinary means instituted by Christ for the forgiveness of sin, and Perfect Contrition supposes the intention of confessing those sins already forgiven by this Act of Contrition. Without this intention an Act of Contrition would not remit a single mortal sin. Should a person afterwards neglect to go to Confession, at least within the year, he would commit a mortal sin by wilfully disobeying one of the Commandments of the Church. So, bear in mind that in order to make a good Act of Contrition we must have the intention of going to Confession. But when? Must one go at the first opportunity? Strictly speaking, no; since we are obliged to go but once a year, except in special circumstances—as, for instance, when we wish to receive Holy Communion. However, all theologians vividly exhort us to go as soon as possible, and for several reasons. We are more certain then that our sins are forgiven, for our contrition may not have been perfect. We thus enjoy greater peace of conscience, and we enrich our souls with the precious graces annexed to the Sacrament of Penance. When, for instance, you meet with an accident and injure, say, your hand or foot, what do you do? You immediately apply such home remedies as you know of, and then call the doctor at the first opportunity, for his prescriptions, you know, are authentic. And you should do the same for an injury to your soul—immediately say an Act of Contrition, which is the home remedy, and then, as soon as possible, have recourse to your spiritual doctor, who is your Confessor.

Again, someone might be inclined to say, 'Since it is so easy to obtain pardon by means of an Act of Perfect Contrition, I need not worry any more. I can sin without scruple, and then simply make an Act of Contrition, and all will be well.' Dear reader, anyone who would reason in this way would not have the shadow of sorrow. How could he say he loved God above everything when he intends to offend Him without scruple? When one is really sorry for having done something he is resolved never to do it again. It may happen, and often does happen, that after one has sincerely repented of a sin, he is tempted again, and again falls into the same sin. This is quite a different thing. His contrition was good, because at the moment his resolution was sincere; but later, under a fresh temptation, he unfortunately fell again. All he can do is to repent once more, and resolve more firmly than ever to be more vigilant in the future.

Perfect Contrition is a great help to all those who sincerely wish to keep in the state of grace—to all those who, in spite of good intentions, through frailty, fall from time to time into mortal sin. But should anyone wish to abuse it as a means of sinning more freely, for him, instead of being a divine remedy, it would turn into an infernal poison.

St. Augustine is the model of Perfect Contrition. Having spent a sinful youth and early manhood, he repented, and in his Confessions says: 'Too late, oh Eternal Goodness! have I learned to know You, but for the future I will love You, I will never again offend You.' See how he coupled with his sorrow the resolution of sinning no more.


It is important during life, and especially at the moment of death, for the following reasons:—

Friends of God

What greater happiness can we wish for in this life than to be in the state of sanctifying grace? It is this which beautifies the soul, which makes it a child of God and an heir to Heaven. It converts every good work and every suffering patiently borne into acts of merit. It is, as it were, a magic wand, converting everything into heavenly gold. On the other hand, what more unfortunate being is there than a person in mortal sin? All his past merits are lost, his soul is in danger of hell, all his good works, all his sufferings, even his prayers, are without the least merit for Eternity. How important, then, to be in the state of grace. And if a person does fall from this state, how can he again acquire it? There are two means—Confession and Perfect Contrition. Confession is the ordinary means, but as it is sometimes very difficult, and even impossible, to go to Confession, Almighty God, in His Goodness, has given us an extraordinary means, which is Perfect Contrition.

Suppose, which God forbid, that someday you have the misfortune of committing a mortal sin. After the distractions of the day, when you are at home in the quiet of the evening, your conscience will begin to trouble you, you will begin to feel ill at ease, and perhaps frightened, and with very good reason, too. What are you to do? God places in your hands the golden key that will reopen for you the Gates of Heaven that you closed during the day. Make an Act of Contrition from the motive of the love of God; resolve to sin no more, and to go to Confession when you can; then go peacefully to bed. You are at peace with God, and if you die during the night you will be saved.

On the contrary, how pitiable is the state of the man who is ignorant of Perfect Contrition! He goes to bed at night and rises in the morning an enemy of God; he continues in this fearful state for days and weeks, perhaps for months and years. This profound darkness into which his soul is plunged is unbroken except for a few days after each Confession; he then sins again, and remains in this state till his next Confession. Unhappy man! To live practically all his life in mortal sin, an enemy of God, without merits for Heaven, and in constant danger of being lost eternally.

Before Holy Communion

Of course, you would not think of going to Holy Communion after having committed a mortal sin and before going to Confession. St. Paul insists: 'Let a man prove himself first.' Let him go to Confession, and then partake of the Eucharistic Bread. Perfect Contrition is an efficacious, but at the same time an extraordinary, means of obtaining pardon—a means to be used when we cannot conveniently go to Confession, and we always have an opportunity of going before Communion. Still, we would do well to make an Act of Contrition immediately before Communion, to purify our souls more and more, and to receive more abundant fruits from this most holy Sacrament.

Again, the practice of making frequent Acts of Contrition is most advantageous for one who habitually lives in the state of grace. Apart from a special revelation from God, we cannot know for certain whether we are in His friendship or not; but every Act of Contrition lessens our anxiety on this point. Again, it often happens that we are in doubt as to whether we have given consent to a temptation or not. What are we to do? Examine our conscience? This is useless, for it will only bring back the temptation again, especially if against holy purity; and, moreover, we will never decide whether we have consented or not. No; make an Act of Perfect Contrition, as St. Francis de Sales was accustomed to do, and worry no more. And even if it were revealed to us that we are in the state of grace, Perfect Contrition would still be most advisable. Every act increases sanctifying grace in our souls, one degree of which is worth more than all the riches of this world. Each act cancels any venial sins that stain our souls, which, in consequence, increase in fervour and sanctity. Each act of perfect love remits some of our purgatory. What did Our Divine Saviour say to Mary Magdalen? 'Because thou hast loved much, much is forgiven thee.' If, in order to lessen our purgatory, we gain Indulgences, do good works, give alms, then the perfect love of God, which is the queen of virtues, merits the very first place among all the virtuous acts we perform.

Finally, every Act of Contrition strengthens our souls, and so increases our confidence of obtaining that greatest of all graces—the grace of final perseverance. What accumulation of graces does not this practice of frequent acts of Perfect Contrition obtain for us.

At the Moment of Death

But, if this practice is so important during life, it reaches the height of its importance at the moment of death, especially when death comes too suddenly to call the priest. Take the case when, some years ago, a fire broke out in a large tenement house and many were cut off from escape by the flames. Among these was a boy of twelve years, who, falling on his knees, loudly recited an Act of Contrition, and invited all to join with him. How many, perhaps, of those unfortunate victims owe their eternal salvation to that boy? Now, dangers surround us every day. You or I, which God forbid, may one day be the victim of an accident—a kicking or bolting horse, a motor-car out of control, a slip on a stairs, a fall off a tram or train, a falling tree—there are a thousand and one ways by which death may come suddenly. A stroke may come when we are at our work or at our meals—suddenly, when least expected. Someone may run for a priest, but he may not arrive in time. What are you to do? Immediately make an act of Perfect Contrition. Don't wait to see if the priest will arrive in time, but immediately repent for having offended and crucified so good a God. You will be saved. Perfect Contrition will be for you the Golden Key of Paradise.

But do not delude yourself with the thought that you will put off your repentance till the moment of death, and that then you will make an act of Perfect Contrition. Perfect Contrition is a grace given only to those of good will, and if anyone were to abandon himself to a life of sin with the hope of a death-bed repentance, he would find himself face to face with a Judge Who will say, 'You will seek Me, but you will die in your sins.'

Will I have sufficient time in case of a sudden death to make an Act of Contrition? With the grace of God, yes. It requires very little time, especially if during life you have made a practice of exciting yourself frequently; it is not necessary to say even one word. Besides, when death is imminent, instants seem like hours. The mind is very active, and, added to this, Almighty God will be most lavish with His graces at that supreme moment.

What irreparable evils are caused through ignorance at the time of an accident! People rush from every side to render assistance. Some begin to cry; everyone loses his head; one rushes for a doctor, perhaps another for a priest; someone calls for water and begins to apply first-aid remedies—and all the time the unfortunate victim is dying. No one has compassion on his soul—no one suggests an Act of Contrition. Should you ever be present at an accident, run quickly but calmly to the victim, give him a crucifix to kiss if you have one, and then slowly and clearly ask him to repeat with his heart what you are about to say. Then slowly and distinctly repeat an Act of Contrition, even though the dying man may not seem to hear or understand you. A soul that you may save in this way will be your crown in Heaven.

Do you know, dear reader, who will most naturally make an Act of Contrition when necessity arises? He, of course, who was most accustomed to make one every day, in every danger, after every sin, only such a one, when the occasion arises, will know how to manage quickly and swiftly the Golden Key of Paradise.


Every Night

All you who have followed me thus far, I beg of you, for the love of God and of your immortal souls, to make this act every night before retiring. This I ask, not because you are obliged in conscience to do so, but because I know it is for your good. Do not tell me that daily examination of conscience and Perfect Contrition are good only for priest and religious; don't make the excuse that you have not the time, or are too tired in the evenings. For how long does it take to make an Act of Contrition? Half an hour? A quarter of an hour? No; a few minutes are quite sufficient. I suppose you say a few prayers before going to bed. Very well! Having finished these prayers, think for a moment or two as to what sins you have committed during the day—you will hardly need to think if you have fallen grievously, for such a sin will rise naturally to your remembrance—then slowly and fervently recite an Act of Contrition, preferably before a crucifix or picture of Our Lady. And then go to bed in peace, for you are at peace with God. Begin this very evening, and never omit this most excellent practice. Should you ever have the misfortune of committing a mortal sin, do not remain in this awful state for an instant—on the spot, or at least before going to bed, say an Act of Contrition, and then go to Confession when you can.

One day, dear reader, sooner or later, the hour of your death will come, and if, which God forbid, it comes suddenly, you now know the key with which to open Heaven. If you have been faithful in making frequent Acts of Contrition during life, I assure you that you will have both the time and the grace to make one at that supreme moment, and thus save your soul. And if you are given sufficient time to prepare for death, let your last prayer be an act of love towards God, your Creator, your Redeemer, and your Saviour—an act of sincere and perfect contrition for all the sins of your whole life. Then throw yourself with childlike confidence into the arms of Divine Mercy, for God will be for you a merciful and compassionate Judge.

And now I leave you. Read and re-read this little book. Get others to read it, and put into practice its precious lessons. Often repeat your Act of Contrition, a simple means, as you have seen, of obtaining pardon, the supreme and only means in case of necessity, a source of grace both during life and particularly at the hour of death—in short, 'THE GOLDEN KEY OF PARADISE.'


If ever there was a time of necessity the time is now!


O my God, I am heartily sorry for having offended Thee, and I detest all my sins because of Thy just punishments, but most of all because they offend Thee, my God, Who art all-good and deserving of all my love. I firmly resolve, with the help of Thy grace, to sin no more and to avoid the near occasions of sin.


My God, I am sorry for my sins with all my heart. In choosing to do wrong and failing to do good, I have sinned against you whom I should love above all things. I firmly intend, with your help, to do penance, to sin no more, and to avoid whatever leads me to sin. Our Savior Jesus Christ suffered and died for us. In his name, my God, have mercy.


O my God, I am sorry for my sins because I have offended you. I know I should love you above all things. Help me to do penance, to do better, and to avoid anything that might lead me to sin. Amen.


O my God, I am heartily sorry for having offended Thee: and I detest my sins most sincerely because they displease Thee, my God, Who art so deserving of all my love for Thy infinite goodness and most amiable perfections: and I firmly purpose by Thy holy grace never more to offend Thee.


I love you Jesus, my Love above all things. I repent with my whole heart for ever having offended You. Never permit me to separate myself from You again. Grant that I may love You always. Then do with me what you will.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Q&A: “How do you explain faith healings in Pentecostal denominations? or any denominations? Are these also fruits of the divine?”

How do you explain faith healings in Pentecostal denominations? or any denominations?
Are these also fruits of the divine? if so, how are they bad? If we relegate them to the works of evil, then we can't distinguish between the divine and the evil based on fruit any longer.»

Hi Dave

Faith healings and seeming miracles in heretical sects, denominations and churches are either hoaxes, power of suggestion, or by the devil. It is also possible, since they have faith in God on this point, that God rewards them with healing in this life. But even if it's true that the healings are divine in some cases, that does not mean that they (who received or performed the seeming miracle) are in a state of grace, are pleasing to God or that they will be saved, since there is no salvation outside the Catholic Church.
If this is not true, then it is the devil who is performing all these “miracles”. The devil can have control over our bodies and if God permits it, he can manipulate it to perform seeming miracles (although, all the devil really does is to manipulate things in the body so that healings will occur). But if the devil is behind it, it is not actually a true miracle, but rather a natural process known to the devil and the demons, and that can be performed through their cunning.
I have also wondered about how heretics seemingly can perform miracles and heal people. My conclusion was that perhaps God has something to do with it in some cases but that they as protestants, won't be saved anyway if God grants them some healings. (Healings and miracles in themselves are not proof of God's acceptance or of being in state of grace or pleasing to God.) God can reward people, whether believers or unbelievers, in this life and hear their prayers. But suffering is also a grace and it is not always a good thing to have health, since having health may lead people into committing more sins and living a worse life. Patient suffering is one sure way of reaching heaven, provided one have patience and faith.

I believe God can and do hear heretics' prayer, and that if they pray for good things they might receive what they wish for and have their reward in this life – instead of the next. If they are truly of good will (i.e., protestants and faith healers), then they will be converted to the true faith before their death. Otherwise they are eternally lost. Most protestants seems to hate the Catholic faith and some also talk derogatory of the Virgin Mother of God. If they don't have Mary as their Mother, then they don't have God as their Father (St. Luis de Montfort).
With protestant missionaries that seemingly perform miracles in favor of those they try to convert, I have thought that if it's not the devil in all cases, that God grants them their prayers (miracles) sometimes for the good of the people who are to be converted. If newly converted people in the jungle die with belief in the Catholic faith and baptism (i.e., with faith in Jesus and the essential mysteries, such as the Trinity and Incarnation), they would actually be saved. I don't know how common it is for protestant ministers to impose anti-Catholic doctrines on newly converted people – hence such newly converted people might be saved if they die before having embraced heretical and damning doctrines against the faith or natural law. So even heretics can be used by God to save souls.
Some saints teach that God can't perform miracles in heretical churches (since such miracles would seem to approve of their faith). If true, then it means all “miracles” of heretics are of the devil. I have wondered much though how the devil could have so much power over heretics if it's truly the devil doing all these apparent miracles. But the bible did say that there would be many false miracles, false prophets and false Christians before the end of times – and I do believe we are currently living in the end of times today.

For there shall arise false Christs and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders, insomuch as to deceive (if possible) even the elect.” (Matthew 24:24)

I hope this answers your question.

P.S. 1
If you give me your full address with name I can send you some free materials, books, dvds and devotionals etc.

P.S. 2
If you want to be a saint and glorify God as much as possible and become holy and pleasing to God, first and foremost you must get a good prayer life and do your ordinary tasks even better. That can be done easily. Please consult the following important articles, books/audio books/booklets on this very topic:

Please consult these articles, they are very good and important for the advancement of your soul.

Please see this blog below for important posts on prayer and other important topics concerning the salvation of our souls:
Also, please read these heavenly revelations, since they are one of the most important books today to read in order to break free from the world and start to love and fear God:
Also see:
1. The Great Apostasy and a counterfeit Church predicted in the New Testament and in Catholic Prophecy:

Also see these articles that deals more in depth with the Vatican II apostasy and the apostate antipope Francis:

An Antipope Francis video can be downloaded for free:

Also, one of the most important things you can read on our website is the following section:

But the whole article is good and should be read:

I hope you look into the material,
Thanks, and God bless,


Friday, February 9, 2018

Letters and Sayings of Father Paul of Moll

I encourage all my readers to read the letters and sayings of Father Paul of Moll in order to grow in their love of God. Fr. Paul was really a soul in love with God and this is clearly seen in his letters and sayings.


Preliminary Remarks by the Author.

We have shown how very busy the Rev. Father Paul was. From morning till night he received a crowd of visitors, or went to visit those who called for his assistance. He heard confessions sometimes until eleven o'clock at night, and as he could not neglect the divine office, nor the many prayers which he had promised to his wards, one asked where he found time for his voluminous correspondence: every day he answered about thirty letters! Did he sacrifice his night's rest for that purpose? It is probable.

There is likewise a very great number of souvenirs or pious pictures, on the back of which he had written in Flemish charming verses, nearly all treating of the love of God. Father Paul, a born poet, wrote verses with the most astonishing facility. There exist a few pious treatises which he had printed, also some manuscripts treating of the love of God, which he perhaps intended to publish.

Father Paul has truly been called the singer of divine love. In his conversations, his letters, his sermons, everywhere he drew attention to the love of God. This divine love with which his heart was inflamed seems to have dictated the following letters, addressed to one of his penitents, an ecstatic.

Most of Father Paul's letters are headed and closed by a pious expression of love for Jesus. In the original Flemish we find these words at the head of the letters: "Uyt liefde tot Jesus," the French equivalent of which is "Par amour pour Jesus," in English literally "With love for Jesus." At the end of these letters he writes in Flemish, "Uyt liefde van Jesus," French, "Par amour de Jesus," which in literal English means, "With love from Jesus." In the English pamphlet this distinction has been overlooked; we prefer the literal translation. Translator's Note.


With Love for Jesus!


I have not been able to reply sooner to your New Year's greetings. I also wish you a happy and salutary New Year, a year of love, a heart of love; let all your actions be love; all your words, love; all your thoughts, love; all your sensations, love; all that you see, love; all that you hear, love; all that you desire, love of God.

O love! O infinite love! Yes, I may well say so, for the love of God is a boundless ocean of love, one drop of which is sufficient to set man's heart on fire with love.

May I not then say, O love! O infinite love? The love of God for man is so great that God forgets, so to say, His infinite justice, in order to be able to show His infinite love.

May I not then say, O love! O infinite love? A mother knows how dearly she loves her children, but what is the love of a mother in comparison with the love of God for us? Less than nothing.

May I not then say, O love! O infinite love? Before man was created, God already loved him with so tender a love that he said, I will give him My flesh.

My blood, My divinity; I shall dwell in Him with all My perfections, for love of him.

May I not say then, O love! O infinite love? O my God! O God of infinite love, I thank Thee and I ask of Thee that I may be able to love Thee ever more and more; that I may be able to love Thee with a burning love!

I have not been able to reply sooner: so many letters are waiting for an answer. Do everything for the love of God; say, "Every thing that I shall do this year, O my God, I shall do for love of Thee!"

In your sufferings, no matter how great they may be, do not complain so long as you are able to love.

God of infinite love! give me a heart of love! I shall ask it for you.

I pray much for you that you may become more and more inflamed with the love of God.

Here is my name: Praised be Jesus Christ!

With love for Thee, Jesus.

With Love for Jesus!


O God, behold my heart in desolation, Bereft of love, it is in bitterness; My heart so steeped in sadness and dejection. Fulfil its longing by the gift of love divine.

One sigh of love is of more value than the whole world, so that for one sigh of the love of God you may renounce the friendship, the honor, the glory and the riches of the world. Therefore, never be sad if I do not write to you or speak to you of love; give one sigh of love for God, and think that you then possess more than all the world can give you. If you suffer, think that God, who is infinite love, wills it, and say, O love! O infinite love!

Live alone with God, that is to say, live apart from the world, but near to God; reveal to no person the intimate sentiments of your heart, only to God alone, and show Him how your heart sighs for His love. Be hidden to men, after the example of the saints. I shall ask for you much love. Always recall to yourself the presence of God, burning with a love greater than the ocean; be convinced that he desires ceaselessly to communicate to you His love. His burning love, in order that you, also, inflamed with love, be transformed into His love. Desire as much as possible to love God more and more. God imparts His love sometimes in peace, and sometimes also in misfortunes or in sufferings; we must praise and thank God for all He does, whether it be pleasing to us or not.

Thank God that He has made known to you His love, yes, that you are able to possess that love, that you are a child of the love of God.

Be so good as to ask love for me, I shall also demand the love of God for you.

With love for Jesus, I am . . .

O love! O infinite love of God!

You may write to me always, I shall reply to you by a short or a long letter, according as it may be possible for me.

(We have rarely seen Father Paul's letters dated. )

With Love for Jesus!


How astonishing is God in His infinite love! We ought to cry out ceaselessly with the greatest enthusiasm, with all our force, with our whole soul, O love! O infinite love! O astonishing love of God!

When the most beautiful angels contemplate the sanctity of God, they sing with one voice and with the greatest astonishment. Holy! Holy! Holy! is the God of all eternity! And, at sight of that astonishing love, they cry out in the same manner three times, O infinite and eternal love of God!

A great number of the children of love, see Jesus in the Holy Sacrament. They have seen Him first in Antwerp. They see our Lord in the great host exposed at the benediction, and they see Him differently at the same time; as a shepherd carrying a lamb on His shoulders or in His arms; in His passion, bleeding; or in the form of a white dove.

As for myself I have seen Him, Oh! I do not know how. M. J. has seen Him often already, under different forms, and she is in ecstasy over it.

They see Jesus distinctly in such a manner that there can be no doubt.

M. J. and two other young ladies have seen the same prodigy in Eecloo.

Several persons from Watervliet went to Eecloo last week, but have seen nothing.

With love from Jesus.

With Love for Jesus!

Sister in Jesus Christ, I prostrate before the infinite love of Jesus, imploring an ocean of love for God. I am sad, God alone with His love can console me.

The fear of not going to heaven, you must consider as a suggestion of the devil. You complain that no one speaks to you of the love of God and you even dare almost to complain that I do not write to you of the love of Jesus.

Few persons have had the great happiness that you have had in being instructed in the love of Jesus. You are like those who have made their studies to become a priest, lawyer, or doctor, they know enough in order to follow their profession. Thus I have taught you of the love of God all that is necessary, in order to advance unceasingly in love.

The devil will do all in his power in order to turn you aside from the love of Jesus. Mary, the Mother of beautiful love, will defend you, all the saints will help you, and I shall pray for you in order that you may always remain a child of love, and make great progress in the love of Jesus.

With love from Jesus, Your humble servant,

D. P.

With Love for Jesus! Dearest Penitent,

O love! O infinite love of Jesus! O excess of love! When shall I be able to love Thee enough, when shall my will be inflamed with love for Thee, O boundless ocean of love? When shall all my desires be desires of love, so that I may be able to love Thee and to love nothing else but Thee and Thee alone, O my God, O infinite love? I shall seek until I shall find Thee, I shall knock until Thou shalt open for me, I shall pray until Thou shalt give me an ardent love and shalt suppress in me all other sentiments.

Love surpasses incomparably, both in value and in beauty, all satisfaction. God, by His nature, is infinite love, and it is with this infinite love that He loves man so much.

To understand, or, at least, to get an idea of His infinite love, think of His infinite perfections. If you wish to have an idea of the love with which He loves man, see with what love God loves Mary.

He has given so much to Mary that she is called the Mother of beautiful love. This great love was granted to her as Mother of God. Mary being truly our Mother, how could God love our Mother so much without loving her children? If God reserved that ardent and great love for Mary, our Mother, this love would not be fully agreeable to her because Mary, as Mother, would not be happy to see that her children did not share that true happiness. What does a mother desire, if not to see her children share her happiness? God Himself, the infinite Love, has not thought differently, for see what an incomprehensible love He has for the children of Mary!

Is it not for the children of Mary that Jesus suffered so much? It was in order to prove His love for the children of Mary. Jesus did not suffer for Mary, for she never was guilty in the eyes of God, she never had to render an account; but, through sin, her children have made themselves culpable before God, and it was in order to satisfy for sin that Jesus came. But Jesus has done much more than was necessary: all that He suffered more, He endured for the love of man in order to prove to him His love.

Every time you see a crucifix you may say, O excess of love! Every time Jesus scourged comes into your mind you may say, O love! O infinite love! When you see Jesus carrying the cross you may say, O excess of the infinite love of Jesus! God has given so much love to Mary that she is called with reason the Mother of beautiful love, and all the children of Mary are equally children of beautiful love, and those who are not, have rejected that right through sin. That right lost can be restored through the infinite merits of Jesus, merits which He has acquired for us in His love for us.

When then you see Jesus in His passion, you see Him at the same time in His excess of love. Often contemplate Jesus enduring outrages, humiliations, mockeries, derision, and say, O love! O infinite love of Jesus! When you think of the Most Holy Sacrament, when you receive Jesus or when you make spiritual communions, or when you adore Jesus, you may say, O infinite love of Jesus!

Have an ardent desire to be a child of the love of Jesus. The love of Jesus is a great treasure beyond comparison.

I wish you a good and happy year, a year of love, so that you, also, may be a child of beautiful love as your Mother Mary is the Mother of beautiful love.

With love from Jesus.

With Love for Thee, Jesus!

Dearest Sister in Jesus Christ,

I should wish to write you a long letter, but I have no time; I must preach the Lenten sermons, preach at the Masses and teach catechism to the children.

Love! O infinite love of Jesus! I give Thee my heart, to Thee alone, not once, but throughout eternity.

On the days when you have but little or no love, do not murmur against Jesus, do not speak to anybody of it; you can tell it to me. In heaven you will be able to live without being separated from the love of Jesus, but not so on earth. Only say, O Jesus of infinite love! I feel, or, I have no love, but be it according to Your desire, I accept it for love of You and in the hope that You will grant me more. See, however, I experience the hunger and thirst for Your love, I long for You as the fish longs for the water out of which it has been taken; You cannot nor would You abandon me, You only wish to try me; You act very well, but do not make me languish without Your love; I make the resolution never to love anything but You.

I ought to tell you yet much on the subject of poor sinners, who do not know God or who do not love Him; I must yet very much exhort you to praise and thank God, but I have no time.

During the time of Lent often take into your hand the chalice of bitterness. O love! O infinite love, would that you could set on fire all hearts!

With Love for the Sacred Heart of Jesus!

Dearest Penitent,

O love! O excess of the love of Jesus! I give Thee my heart, to Thee alone, not once, but always, unto eternity, and with so great a love as no person ever has done. The excess of the love of God is not contained within the infinite perfections of God, but that love is found wherever it is possible. It is found in the souls in purgatory, it is found upon earth. I cannot say that upon earth, it is less brilliant than in purgatory, for can we see that love more clearly than in the Holy Sacrament of infinite love, and in the passion of Jesus?

Jesus allowed Himself to be so horribly scourged as thereby to become unrecognizable. Jesus, so beautiful, behold how disfigured He with blood and wounds is now, so that one cannot recognize Him except by His love: to those who did not know His love He became completely unrecognizable.

In purgatory, His infinite love is known, although the souls are not as yet fully satiated with it; but in heaven, they will be eternally filled with it; love will satiate them in a manner incomprehensible. There the souls see the infinite grandeur of God; unceasingly they see and receive continual effusions of love, resembling the torrents of a boundless ocean of love.

The grandeur of God is incomprehensible, and it is as if He were great and powerful only to show His love, to bestow love and to receive the love of man in order to unite Himself always with man through love.

What is the Holy Sacrament of love if not a union of the love of God with man? Therefore it is that I encourage all children of love to the constant practice of spiritual communion and sighs of love. They unite us equally to God through love, much less, it is true, than real Communion, but yet they help to receive Jesus with so much greater love in Holy Communion.

I desire most ardently that this love may be known by the hearts of all men that they may be inflamed with love for God. The incomprehensible and burning love of God continually fills man, that God may reign in his heart; but mortal sins constantly push back that love. God Himself says, "I do not want the death of sinners, but I want them to live that I may love them, and be united with them through love."

Those who are in the state of grace, but do not know His love, God loves with an incomprehensible love because God loves everything that is good; but we shall never understand the love that God bears towards His children of love, and how much He desires to unite Himself with them by love.

It is on account of this love for man that Jesus had the will to suffer, with great patience, all outrages, contempt, and pain. With what satisfaction can we not suffer, and desire to suffer to show our love for Jesus!

If it is given you to take part in the love of Jesus, then take part, also, in His dolorous passion. If Jesus often comes to console you with His sweet love, take likewise and joyfully your part of pity for Jesus in His excess of suffering, as was done by the sorrowing women.

How can one contemplate Jesus in the excess of His suffering, for the love of man, without being touched and saying, I want to give my love to Jesus!

I recommend to you again the devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. O Sacred Heart of Jesus! O Sacred Heart of Jesus! O ocean of love!

I do not know as yet if the love for Jesus will make me depart from here. I shall demand for you love for Jesus.

With love from the Sacred Heart of Jesus, I am your humble servant in Jesus,

D. P. relig.

With Love for Jesus!

Dearest Sister,

O love! O infinite love of God for man! How astonishing God is in the love with which He loves man! For all that you see He has made in His infinite love. Look at the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and you will hear Jesus tell you, "Behold the heart that has loved men so much." Look at the Most Holy Sacrament. What is the Most Holy Sacrament? It is an excess of love. Look at the holy Face, that holy Face says to you, "O love! O infinite love of Jesus!" Look at Jesus crucified, and must you not cry out, "O love! O infinite love of Jesus! Is it possible, that love can go so far?"

Was His love held up by the cross? Ah, no, this Jesus with His Sacred Heart, and in the Most Holy Sacrament and crucified, went to heaven. There He is seated upon a throne of infinite glory; from there, He pours forth His infinite love into all the hearts open to His love. Every sigh of love, every desire of love is a new opening of your heart, allowing the love of God to penetrate.

Unite yourself to God through love, and rejoice in such great happiness; thank God for this great benefit, and be so much the more ardent in the love of God.

I am overburdened with work, it happens sometimes that I am unable to write more, do not expect it of me.

With love from Jesus, I am.

With Love for Jesus!

Sister in Jesus Christ,

O love! O infinite love of God for man! One word escapes from my lips and plunges me into the greatest astonishment, O love! O . . .

It is not given to any man to tell what the infinite love of God is, not even to make any comparison of it. All that can be said about it is still nothing.

Imagine all the love of one hundred thousand mothers for their children. It is nothing in comparison with the infinite love of God. One may say that a drop of water is a portion of the ocean; but all the love we can imagine cannot give us an idea of the least part of the love of God for man.

I wish you would allow me never to say more than, O love! O infinite love of God! I can hardly say anything more or anything better, for these words contain all that is necessary to induce us never to do anything except for the love of God; they are sufficient to satiate us with the love of God, and make us desire Him more and more.

When meditation becomes impossible for you, think of the love of God.

God, the saints and the souls in purgatory are my sole occupation.

Pray for me and the souls in purgatory, I will pray for you.

With love from Jesus,

D. Paul, relig.

With Love for Jesus!

Sister in Jesus Christ,

With the grace of God, I must tell you that nothing occupies my heart more than the love of God. I wish to love the God of most tender and amiable love, and I cannot desire or wish anything better to others, yes, to all persons of the world.

For this reason the devil persecutes me much and, as happens very often in a similar case, the instruments of which he makes use are the very ones who owe me the greatest gratitude, thus rendering the humiliation still more painful.

I thank you for your good wishes. I wish you likewise a beautiful and happy year, a year of love; for that end I recommend to you three inexhaustible sources of love: —

1. The Most Holy Sacrament.

2. The sorrowful passion of Jesus Christ.

3. The Sacred Heart of Jesus, there to establish your dwelling and nourish yourself with the infinite love of God.

Your humble servant,

O love! O infinite love of God!

With Love for Jesus!

Sister in Jesus Christ,

Cry out and repeat a thousand times, O love! O infinite love of God for man! For God is infinite love, and to man alone He has given a heart of love in order to love God and be loved of Him. For this reason we ought to have a high regard for all men; if they are not already children of love, they may become so.

This obliges me to give an impressive notice to all the children of love; be prudent, for not every one is as yet a child of love, nor does every one understand what it is to be a child of love.

For this reason the impossible will be attempted to hinder the children of love from going where they can nourish themselves with love. Alas! if one knew the love of God, one would not act contrary to it. It is my duty to cry out: Do not go to such and such a place, for love is in danger there. Help me to nourish the children of love; if they say or do anything against you, pass on and say: What does it matter? It is a child of love.

With love from Jesus, I am,

D. Paul, relig.

With Love for Jesus!

Dearest Sister in Jesus Christ,

For the love of Thee, Jesus, I demand of Thee, I pray Thee, I beseech Thee to inspire me in this writing; give me to know Thy holy will. O love! O infinite love! I give Thee my heart, to Thee alone, not once, but continually and for eternity. We shall never be able to proclaim nor admire worthily the infinite goodness of God. God is infinitely great and has an incomprehensible love for miserable man, so inclined to evil and so indifferent towards God. When a man, the greatest enemy of God, truly contrite, asks pardon of God by going to confession, the love of God is so great that He gives Himself at once, soul, body, and divinity, and wants to love that man, love him always more and more. No matter how miserable he may be, provided he is no longer in the state of mortal sin, God loves him with an incomprehensible love.

How can one despise or not love one whom God loves so tenderly, so paternally? What a great crime to do evil to one whom God loves so much?

Why is there more joy in heaven over one sinner who does penance than over ninety-nine just? Because in heaven they see the joy which the fact of being able to love that man once more, procures for the heart of the infinite love of God.

The heavenly spirits are absorbed in the abyss of the infinite love of God, and they see much better than we are able to understand, what an inexpressible joy it is for the infinite love of God to be able to love again a man who, by mortal sin had rejected the love of God.

What can there be more agreeable to the heart of the infinite love of God than to pray for the conversion of those who are in the state of mortal sin? To be a child of love, is to sacrifice oneself to the love of God for the conversion of sinners.

I rejoice at the one word, the conversion of sinners! If we had to pray hundreds of years in order to have a man brought back to the love of God, we would have reason enough to rejoice on account of it.

God demands now that you be and remain a true child of love, and that your love grow greater unceasingly. Ask God that all your actions, from the beginning of your existence, be actions of love for God, performed in union with the sorrowful passion of Jesus.

O Jesus! my Well-beloved, do You permit Yourself to be ill-treated so frightfully? Is it to give proofs of Your love? O Jesus! You have already given sufficient proofs; no person can ever say that You have not given enough pledges of Your love. O Jesus! grant me the joy of being able to prevent You being ill-treated so much.

Holy blood! O blood of love! would that I could imitate Thee!

I had no time to answer you sooner.

With love from Jesus, I am . . .

Praised be Jesus Christ!

With Love for Jesus!

Dearest Sister in Jesus Christ,

O love! O infinite love of my God! O love without beginning and without end, how great you are, how sweet, how agreeable!

O love of my God! You are great, because you are infinite; you are sweet, because whoever has tasted you is famished with love. The more one has of it, the more one desires; always more and more inflamed with love; never satiated with love; for the more one tastes of it, the sweeter it is, the more intense is the desire for love, the ardent love for God.

Love is agreeable, for from the moment one knows it, one can scarcely love anything else but the love of God. Therefore, St. Augustine has said, "Lord God, if I had known Thee sooner, I would have loved Thee sooner." Love is so agreeable that whoever knows the love of God, scarcely loves anything but that agreeable love. Why should it not be agreeable to the heart of man, since God Himself has said, “I shall be all things to you,” that is to say, all the good we can imagine to ourselves, such as all sweetness, all harmony.

Does not a son enjoy the riches of a good father? How agreeable it is for a child to enjoy with his father his great riches! Which are the riches of God? They are His infinite perfections, and the ability to be loved by an infinite love, and to be able to love.

So then, when you have some love for God, you may esteem yourself happy on account of it, according to the degree of your love for God, and in that case, you may consider all other things as nothing, such as riches and pleasures, persecution and sufferings, outrages and contempt; and suffer all, because then you have a chance to prove your love for Jesus.

It is easy to show one's love for Jesus in prosperity and good fortune; but to show a beautiful love in bitterness [is not as easy] . . . With you it is not as with many others who seem to have much love as long as everything turns out according to their wishes, but whose love is all eclipsed in the time of adversity.

From the moment a man knows God, his first action is to love Him, to give Him his love, and that need of loving is so much the greater the better he knows his God.

Never shall one know God well, so long as one is attached to men and the world: we must not attach ourselves to them except in so far as they lead us to the knowledge and love of God.

If Adam had not sinned, love would be the sole desire of man; but sins have diminished and obscured in man his desire for the love of God. We may revive that desire by prayer, by ardent and earnest prayer, by detachment, by a perfect life, and thus arrive at ardent love for God.

Hence, never become discouraged if it costs you much to have a little of the love of God; for one sigh
of love is of more value than all that the world can procure.

With love from Jesus.

Extracts from Letters.

Addressed by the Rev. Father Paul to a lady of Audenarde.

God is impenetrable. His wisdom is infinite. Jesus has shown His love for us by incomparable sufferings. It is the divine will that we show our love for God throughout everything and in everything, but especially in our sufferings.

In suffering one recognizes true love. One suffers, but it is for the love of Jesus.

An act of love for God in suffering causes the astonishment of the angels; an act of love for God in suffering is formidable to the demon; an act of love for God in suffering will shine in heaven for all eternity.

If one could understand the value of an act of love for God in suffering, one would experience the greatest grief at being obliged to pass a single moment without being able to make this meritorious act. Happy is he who, in suffering, makes acts of love!

Madam, I recommend you to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, you and your whole family. Often say with devotion: O Sacred Heart of Jesus of infinite love and mercy without end, give me a heart of love, and give Thy grace to poor sinners, that they may be enabled to know Thee and love Thee.

I shall commence a novena for you on Wednesday, and from now on, I shall give you my blessing twice a day, at half past five in the morning and towards eight in the evening. You may always write to me, without fear of troubling me.

God is infinitely good and wise. He shows His goodness towards you by sending you crosses. The more bitter your pains, the more meritorious they are.

Every cross is a blessing from heaven, a blessing which surpasses all the happiness of the world. If one were able to understand the full value of crosses, it would be a terrible torment to be deprived of them.

I shall pray that God may make you know the value of crosses, so that you may appreciate them all the more, and I shall demand for you great patience. Suffer everything, henceforth, in thanksgiving for this special grace. In heaven you will see how true is all that I tell you.

Extracts from Letters of the Rev. Father Paul.

To a member of his family.

I wish you particularly the grace to see what God is in His infinitive love, in order to love Him with your whole heart, during your whole life, and to be hereafter united with Him for all eternity. We cannot comprehend how much God loves us, and all that He does to show His great love to men: but we comprehend still less what He will do in heaven for His children of love.

If it were given you to see one little ray of His great love, you would never be able to say anything else but, "O love! O infinite, O beautiful love of God!"

God does not demand of you, in order to be a child of love, that you should do more than you are able to do, but all He says to you is, "My child give me your heart!" And I add thereto, "Do everything for love of Jesus."

Often say, before all your work, "For love of Thee, Jesus." Often think of the love of God, and principally of three things wherein He has shown His great love, in the Most Holy Sacrament, in His sorrowful passion, and in His Sacred Heart.

When you communicate, recall His great love, then unite yourself with God through love, give your heart to God, demand a heart that will love Him always more and more; above all think of the sorrowful passion of Jesus, principally on Friday; and when you have to suffer anything, consider with what love He has suffered, that you also may suffer everything for the love of Jesus in His Sacred Heart, the source of infinite love.

At my next visit we shall again talk of the infinite love of God. Love to go to Holy Communion and often make spiritual communions. Never attach yourself to the world, but flee from it . . .

The love which God devotes to man, and that with which he is loved ought to be considered the greatest treasure He can give us. In order to understand this, it would be necessary for us to be able to know God, a thing impossible, because God is infinitely perfect. It is the same with regard to His love, the more you were to consider the love of God, the more you would have to say, "O love! O infinite love of God!"

Unite yourself often with God through love, at your morning and evening prayer, and say, "I shall do everything for the love of God that all my actions may be acts of love." Ask for that love through the intercession of Mary. Suffer and endure everything for the love of Jesus, as Jesus has suffered everything for love of us.

I wish you an ardent love for God, it is the richest and most beautiful treasure you can wish or desire. All other treasures will disappear like smoke; but the treasure of love shall remain forever in heaven.

Ask God for this beautiful treasure, for it must come from Him; men cannot procure it for you. For this reason often ask God for a heart of love that you may love Him ever more and more, and like a child of love. Add to your morning and evening prayers, "All that I shall do today, or tonight, I shall do for the love of God, so that all my actions may be actions of love. I unite myself today, or tonight, with all the acts of love made to God, both in heaven and on earth." Say quite often during the day, when you commence to do something, were it only moving a chair, opening or shutting a door, or any other action, "For love of Thee, Jesus."

When you have to suffer anything say, "I want to suffer it for the love of Jesus, just as Jesus has suffered all for love of me."

Have a great devotion to the Most Holy Sacrament of love. Communicate as often as you can, and never say, "I am not worthy to do so!" Nobody is sufficiently worthy of it, but the great love of God calls you. Often have a desire of receiving Jesus.

[Have a great] Devotion to the sorrowful passion of Jesus.

[Have a great] Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Everywhere we can find the great love of God, at home, in the fields, in the street, in the convents, in good health, in sickness, in adversity, in poverty, everywhere except in the riches, the honor, the glory and the pleasures of the world.

I shall ask for you also a share of the love of God.

Pray much for the souls in purgatory.

Other Extracts from Letters of the Rev. Father Paul.

The love of God is my desire, my riches, my joy, and my best food, yes, all!

O God of infinite love! Give me two wings to fly towards Thee, that I may rest in Thee and be satiated with Thy beautiful love; a wing of love, to draw me without ceasing toward Thy beautiful love, and a wing of confidence in order to help me to perform all my actions, all my steps, all my prayers for the love of God.

Who shall ever be able to understand the love, infinitely great, wherewith Thou, O God, lovest man! We should wish to express, to describe that love; one word only escapes our powerless lips: O love! O infinite love of God! O sweet love, sweeter than honey! O ocean of love! inflame my heart with the sacred fire of Thy holy love!

My name is Love.

O love! O infinite love of Jesus! O Jesus give me a mouth of love so as to entertain all men with Thy infinite love! Give me a heart of love so that nothing else may come forth from it but for Thy beautiful love. Give me eyes of love that I may see nothing else but Thy love in all things, even in my sufferings and in everything that goes against me. Give me a taste of love, that I may taste Thy love in everything I eat and drink. Give me hands of love that I may write of Thy beautiful love to all the children of love. Give me feet of love that I may go and entertain those who suffer, with Thy beautiful love and Thy ignominious and painful death, so that they may not complain any longer of their crosses.

O love! O infinite love of God! Thy love, O my God, is my nourishment, my treasure, my consolation, my life! I do not need any one but those who speak to me of Thy beautiful love. O love of Jesus! Thou art my consolation, my all. Nothing against Thee, everything for Thee!

O love! O infinite love of Jesus!

Thus my name is written.

  1. I offer up this day (or this night) for the greater glory of God. Everything that I shall do today (or tonight) I shall do for the love of God, that all my actions may be acts of love.
  2. I unite myself today (or tonight) with all the acts of praise and thanksgiving that are elicited in heaven and on earth.
  3. I unite myself with all the acts of love that are made by the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
  4. I unite myself with all the sentiments of pity that ever have been felt and ever will be felt for Jesus in His pains. I make the intention of saying each time when God or His holy name is blasphemed: "My God, be Thou praised and blessed forever and ever! Thy holy name be praised and blessed forever and ever!"
  5. I consign myself today (or tonight), body and soul, into Thy hands.
  6. I unite myself with all the acts of adoration and love that are made in the Most Holy Sacrament of infinite love.

During the day make frequent spiritual communions, when entering or leaving the church, when retiring and in other circumstances.

Unite yourself often with God by ejaculatory prayers, and elevate your heart to God. Think often of the passion of Jesus, and suffer everything for the love of Jesus, the same as Jesus suffered everything through love for you.

As often as I shall recite seven Our Fathers and seven Hail Marys, I resolve to say, "In honor of the drops of blood shed for us by Jesus! and to obtain the graces which Jesus has attached thereto, and to complete the number thereof."

When going out I say at the door, "Through love for Thee, Jesus!" And when I am alone I recite five Our Fathers and five Hail Marys for the conversion of sinners, and the six Our Fathers, six Hail Marys and six Glory be to the Father etc., connected with the blue scapular, and I consign the indulgences into the hands of Mary.

Letter of Rev. Father Paul.

To a working woman of Thielt.

O love! O infinite love of God! How astonishing, beautiful and amiable is God in His love! O God of infinite love! I ask Thee for the grace to be able to write to Mathilde of Thy love.

Exclaim then anew with myself and with all the children of love, and also with Sister Luitgarde, "O love! O infinite love of God! Give me a heart to love Thee, O my God! and to love Thee with an immense love."

A sigh of love for God, brought forth with devotion, is of more value than the whole world; the world will perish completely, but the sigh of love for God is for eternity. If it were given you to heave [to raise up], with devotion, but one sigh of love for God in your whole life, you would still be obliged to say, "An eternity even were too short to thank God for it sufficiently."

Offer your sufferings to God for the love of Jesus, as Jesus has suffered all for the love of us.

I hope you will not die yet; but if God wills it, die with love for Jesus, the same as Jesus has died with love for us: be then without fear.

You are still able to say, "I want to suffer everything for the love of Jesus, as Jesus has suffered everything for love of us, in order to obtain the pardon and expiation of my sins, and to be able, at once after my death, to unite myself with Jesus through love and for all eternity."

Sister Luitgarde may read this letter and I will have her admitted among the children of the beautiful love of Jesus.

With love from Jesus,

D. Paul relig.

A Few Recent Favors Obtained through the Intercession of Father Paul.

San Antonio, Tex. The St. Benedict's Medal that had touched Father Paul's relic and which you sent to the sick lady, has done wonderful work here; but the good lady had to part with it, to save the life of a dying man, who had not approached the sacraments since he made his first Holy Communion. After it was placed on his neck and dipped into water for him to bathe in, he immediately became better. There was a lady here who had not been to confession or Mass for twenty years. Some one gave her a St. Benedict's Medal to put on last Tuesday and on Saturday she went to confession.

Ohio. A priest writes: Father Paul's life is one of the most interesting lives I ever read. Through his intercession I have received some marked favors recently. The devotion to St. Benedict and Father Paul is rapidly increasing in this parish. Spiritual and temporal favors have been granted through their intercession. A wonderful, religious spirit is manifesting itself all about the parish. I have received great blessings through the intercession of Father Paul during the past year and I wish to show my gratitude by distributing a few copies of his life.

Mt. Vernon, Ohio. A Protestant lady came to me two weeks ago. She had a large, angry looking lump on the upper eyelid. I told her to go to the doctor at once; but she did not like the idea. So I said: I will give you a Medal of St. Benedict, to use on your eye and to wear on your neck. Last Thursday she sent me word that the evening before, as she was sitting before the grate-fire the lump fell off in her lap. She was so thankful and intends to wear the Medal all her life. I feel sure of her conversion. As she wanted to read something about the Saint that cured her, I gave her the life of Father Paul to read.

Detroit, Mich. I asked the intercession of Father Paul of Moll in a very serious matter and I promised to have a holy Mass said in his honor for the repose of the poor souls, if my request were granted. I am more than grateful to say that my prayer was indeed heard in a very extraordinary manner. It goes to show, how great is the power of the saintly monk.

San Francisco. Father Paul of Moll has been a good Father to me in the past year, he has obtained for me a number of favors, one special great one, the cure in a serious illness.

Sacred Heart Convent, N. Dak. I will mention to Father Paul's honor what he did for us. Last November I fell and broke my shoulder in three places; the physicians said I could never use that arm again; I made two novenas to St. Benedict and Father Paul. Now I have the use of this same arm (right one) as I had before the accident.

Iowa. Another priest from Iowa writes: — Father Paul has been a striking revelation to me. I have read the wonderful book twice and am treasuring up the heavenly light that shines in it and the divine wisdom of his sayings. When the world at large will know completely of Father Paul, he will become a new St. Anthony of Padua and countless blessings he will obtain for those who call upon him in their distress.

Missouri. A Redemptorist Father writes: — Our aged Father. . . . has great confidence in the intercession of Father Paul of Moll. Whenever he suffered from a pain in his head, he invoked Father Paul and was at once relieved. Later on he invoked him, when suffering from a long-standing, intermittent pain in the left side. He was suddenly cured after invoking him and the pain has not returned since.

Newport, Ky. Our one year old baby took very sick with bronchitis, then pneumonia, then inward convulsions. His heart got very bad. His temperature at times would be over 103. He took vomiting and diarrhea. He was indeed a very sick baby. Besides our doctor we had a specialist. We prayed to the Sacred Heart, to the Blessed Virgin and to St. Anthony. The nurse was a Protestant. At night she would read the book of Father Paul of Moll for pastime. One evening the nurse said, "Why don't you make a novena?" I said, "My goodness, Ida, I have prayed so much, let God's will be done!" However, she insisted on starting a novena that night; she would help us pray. A queer remark for a Protestant. We started a novena that night to Father Paul of Moll and on the tenth day the baby was pronounced out of danger.


Preliminary Remarks.

A conversation with the Rev. Father was always a real treat to his intimate friends. His advice and counsels were given with surprising precision and appropriateness.

The Rev. Father showed himself well informed on all subjects, and solved the most difficult questions in a few words. He gave his friends instructions on a multitude of subjects, God, the angels, the saints, religion, the future life, human sciences, art, everything in fact, as though he possessed infused knowledge and wisdom.

What pleasant and consoling remembrances! But, also, what a pity that all his precious communications were not at once written down for future reference!

We have recalled to mind, and gathered up some of these sayings and conversations, and the brief specimens which we give will, we hope, induce all the friends of Father Paul to record likewise their own personal recollections concerning this matter.

Sayings of Father Paul.

Father Paul attributed the wonders which he worked to the intervention of his holy Father Benedict.

"As for me," he would say, "I am only the doorkeeper of St. Benedict."
They say that St. Benedict is minister of heaven. We must often speak to him."
St. Benedict is our Father, he is obliged to take care of us."
I have no need of any one, the Blessed Virgin and St. Benedict are sufficient for me."

Some one reminded Father Paul that, according to tradition, people obtained all that they demanded from a certain saint on his feast day.
"Every day," he replied, "is the feast of St. Benedict."

A friend from Oostcamp once complained of a pain in his eyes, and said he had consulted a physician.
"All right!" replied Father Paul; "but have you already addressed St. Benedict? He is the best physician."

To show the great power of the medal of St. Benedict, Father Paul maintained that one medal was sufficient to put out a conflagration.

The death of a young lady brought sorrow to a numerous family. They spoke of it to Father Paul who showed himself deeply effected and said, —
"A medal of St. Benedict would have cured her."

"Lightning and the noise of thunder have always been the cause of terror to me. When it thunders I tremble like a leaf," said a man from the country to Father Paul.
"Here is a medal of St. Benedict," he replied; "Wear it around your neck, you will not be afraid any more, and will have nothing to fear from lightning."

In the beginning of his residence at Steenbrugge, Father Paul said to his friends, "St. Benedict is not well enough known."

When I have a visit to make, I do not trust to myself for what I have to say, and I do not get my speeches ready; but I pray to the Holy Spirit to enlighten me, and aid me."

"Parents in heaven intercede unceasingly with God in behalf of their children on earth."
"By their prayers and good works, children augment the accidental glory of their parents who are in heaven."
"The souls in purgatory are aware of the discord of the members of their families on earth, and this knowledge increases their sufferings."

Speaking of the soul of a lady deceased, Father Paul said, "She remained only one hour in purgatory, and she did not stay there any longer because she brought up her children so well." He added that by a special privilege, this lady had undergone the hour of her purgatory on the chair in which she had expired [i.e., through her suffering before death].

A lady having died after a long and painful sickness her daughter went to Steenbrugge and asked Father Paul if he thought that her mother went straight to heaven, after so many sufferings.
"Madam," he replied, "Your mother would be already in heaven, if she had not spoiled her children so much. She is still in purgatory pray hard for her."

"A good means of avoiding a long stay in purgatory is to die entirely resigned to the holy will of God,"
A lady had met her death in a terrible railway collision near Ghent. Father Paul said that her soul had gone straight to heaven because, at the last moment, the lady cried out, "Lord, may Thy will be done."

A person from the village of Ursel complained to Father Paul that an ecstatic had told her that her father, who had died a short time before, was in purgatory.
"I became angry with this girl," she said, "because my father was an excellent Christian and died completely resigned to the will of God, I cannot believe that his soul is still in purgatory!"
Father Paul sweetly replied, "Why do you refuse to believe what this ecstatic girl asserts? Of course, you are not obliged to do so. Your father was very good, but are you quite certain that he died entirely resigned to the will of God? . . . For the rest, do not be so anxious; it is not sure that your father has to suffer in purgatory. A great many souls endure no other suffering than the delay of their admission to heaven; and to many of them permission is given to hover in the church before the Most Holy Sacrament."

"In order to go straight to heaven, one must make a close acquaintance with the Queen of Heaven."

A young girl from the country asked Father Paul to say a Mass for the success of a certain affair. "Rather have that Mass said for the repose of the soul of your mother who is deep down in purgatory," he replied.

Father Paul used to relate that the soul of a sister appeared to him and said, "Oh, my father! purgatory is more terrible than you have described!"
"The cold which certain souls endure in purgatory is as terrible as fire."

A subscriber to an irreligious journal having died at Saint-Michel, his wife would not give up the paper, although she refrained from reading it.
Father Paul maintained for certain that the widow would have to remain long in purgatory, for having tolerated the introduction of a journal of that kind into her house.

"There are souls condemned to stay in purgatory till the end of the world."

Father Paul often asserted that the souls in purgatory who were delivered by his prayers came to thank him.

Sometimes, at the request of the relatives of those that had died, Father Paul told them how long the souls of these departed ones had to stay in purgatory. But usually he avoided letting them know when they were delivered, because, as a rule, he said, the friends then cease to pray for their souls, and yet the prayers offered up for them increase their accidental happiness in heaven.

He also said that a great number of suffering souls continually came to him to ask his prayers for their deliverance, and that at night, his bed was surrounded by suffering souls.

In the confessional Father Paul said to one of his penitents, "If you were to die now, you would have three days of purgatory, and I could diminish your punishment by only one day."

"None of my near relatives are any longer in purgatory."

Father Paul said to a Carmelite nun, "You can avoid passing through purgatory, if you carefully observe the Rule of your Order."

Father Paul said that he gave himself the discipline every day for the following intentions: —

1. The perseverance of the just.

2. The conversion of sinners.

3. The holy Church.

4. The souls in purgatory.

5. The happiness of his friends and benefactors. He used to say that a great many suffering souls would then appear to him and cry out, "For me, if you please! For me! For me!"

"On each of her feasts, the Blessed Virgin descends into purgatory, consoles all the suffering souls, and delivers many of them."

A Beguine from Antwerp having died suddenly, her servant was deeply grieved. As Father Paul was visiting a lady acquaintance of his, she spoke to him of the servant's grief.
"Oh!" said the Father, "She ought not to be sad, her old mistress will be in purgatory only for eight days, and she does not suffer there."

A merchant was on the point of having recourse to a banker, but he thought it best to consult Father Paul first.
"For my part," he replied, "I would rather address myself to the souls in purgatory than the banker, for these souls are always grateful when we pray for their release, and they then obtain from God all we ask and even more."

Father Paul was always on the lookout for an opportunity of enrolling members in the Confraternity of the Blue Scapular, and advised the new members to gain every day, as far as possible, all the plenary indulgences applicable to the suffering souls.
The members of this Confraternity can gain a great number of plenary indulgences for the souls in purgatory, as often as they recite six Our Fathers, Hail Marys and Glory be to the Father, etc., and this without the necessity of approaching the sacraments.

At Termonde, in 1894, a man was the victim of a terrible accident which cost his life. Father Paul spoke of this unhappy case as follows: "He had no religion and never went to church, but his soul is not lost because, at the last moment, he offered up his life in expiation of his sins. All the same, he will stay a long time in purgatory."

A lady from Antwerp writes: "Very often we had the happiness of having the good and saintly Father Paul at our house. During the evenings, in the intimacy of a holy friendship, he would entertain us with pious topics, and when he spoke to us of the love of God, it was with the burning words of a seraph, he would go on repeating: —
"O love of God! Love so little known! so little loved! Who can describe the love of God for us? No, the love of all the mothers united to the love of all the angels and saints is only an atom compared to His divine love!"
"When he spoke to us of the passion of our Savior he shed abundant tears, and his face was, as it were, transfigured.
"He told us once that his sermons had been criticized because he never failed to speak of the love that God has for us.
"And then," he said, "I took some notice of these remarks; but God gave me to understand that I had not done right, and He commanded me to speak, at each sermon or conference, of His great love for man."

The souls in purgatory had a great comforter in Father Paul. "One day," he told us, "I was very sick in my cell, and leaning with my elbow on the back of my chair, I heard quite close to me, groans and lamentations. I turned around and beheld a soul enveloped in flames and completely tied up with chains. This soul asked me to remember her in my prayers, and especially in the holy sacrifice of the Mass. I said to her, "Pray for me; I shall pray for you." At that very instant the soul disappeared and I found myself cured. Shortly afterwards this soul was released and came to thank me."

Father Paul related one of his visions to a person from Knesselaere in the following manner: —

"The Blessed Virgin appeared to me, holding the Divine Infant in her arms; he was crying bitterly and did not cease to complain. I asked Mary what was the cause of the sorrows of the little Jesus, and she replied, 'it is because priests do not remind the faithful sufficiently of the love of God for man, and of the passion of our Savior.'
"Thereupon I promised to treat of these two subjects in my next sermon, and immediately the sadness of the Infant Jesus was changed into great joy. He threw His little arms round the neck of His Mother, and embraced her tenderly."

A lady acquaintance from Knesselaere paid a visit to Father Paul and found him very ill, his head, and left arm and leg were much swollen. Father Paul explained the cause of his condition in these terms: —

"I had great pains in my head and suffered so intensely from them that I complained to Jesus. He replied to me, 'How insignificant your sufferings are, compared with the martyrdom I suffered, when crowned with thorns!'
"Then I asked Him that I might experience the pain of only one of those thorns and, at the same instant, the torture became so great that I fainted."

From a letter to the Mother Superior of a convent: "it is by love that one can overcome the All powerful God; He is so sensitive to love that He can refuse us nothing."

Extracts from Letters from Father Paul.

To a Lady in Knesselaere.

"God is astonishing in His love. The more we love Him, the more He loves us. He pays us back in tenfold love, the love which we have for Him."

"Man will be all the more glorious in heaven, the greater his love for God has been on earth."

"The love of God is as beautiful for men who love Him, as it is terrible to the demons and the damned."

"The more a man loves God, the more beautiful he grows in the eyes of God."

"God being infinite love, we can always love Him more and more."

"O love! O infinite love! O eternal love! O sweet love of God!"

"Man finds his greatest consolation in faithfully keeping the commandments of God and the holy Church, and in having a great devotion to Mary."

Father Paul once said to a person in Antwerp, "I never cease saying, 'O love! O great love! O infinite love of God!' If men knew how pleasing this is to God, they would repeat it without ceasing; several persons have become saints in this way."

Father Paul once said to a lay sister, a penitent of his: "When you enter the church in the morning it will be like a burning furnace; fire everywhere, the fire of the love of God to welcome you. You will not see this fire, but the whole church will be full of it."

"A sigh of love for God is worth more than a whole year of penance" (penance performed habitually or in our own will).

"God will not ask, 'Have you done much?' but, 'Have you worked for the love of God?' Quantity is not sufficient, it is quality that is necessary."

"On rising in the morning, many persons offer to God all the actions of the day saying, 'All for the glory of God!' But they should say, 'All for the love and glory of God!' because love surpasses all."

Very early one morning. Father Paul seeing a peasant who had come a long distance through a terrific snowstorm, to hear Mass in the church at Steenbrugge, said to him: "If you could see the immense merits which your courage has procured for you, you would be astonished, and you might yet increase them in a measure incredible, by saying, "All for the love of Jesus.'"

To a servant girl in Antwerp Father Paul said, "Before eating, sleeping, opening or closing a door, or any other action, always have the intention of doing all for the love of Jesus. In this way you will continually reap a rich harvest for heaven."

"The devil can promise everything, but can give nothing."

"Humility renders men great in the eyes of God."

"When making the Way of the Cross, try to have compassion for the sufferings of Christ; for all those who took part in His sorrows became saints as, for example, Simon of Cyrene, Veronica, the good thief, the holy women and so many others."

"The power of the demons and their allies among men is not very terrible, because their activity is quickly rendered sterile by want of harmony in their camp, where the troops always end by fighting among themselves."

"The devil cannot go any farther than the length of his chain will allow." (In Flemish: De duvel kan toch maer loopen zoo verre alz zijin keten lang is.)

"The devil becomes still more active at the approach of great festivals; and you will observe that then, especially, he stirs up dissensions in families."

"When a demon suggests a bad thought, it is easy to resist the temptation; but if one does not immediately repel it, a second demon comes at once to help the first. Afterwards, in proportion as resistance is delayed, still other demons come and combine their efforts, and when one has to battle against seven devils all at once, it is very difficult not to succumb."

To pregnant women, Father Paul gave the advice to go to the priest and ask him to recite over them the prayers appointed for that purpose in the ritual, so as to guard themselves, as well as the children to be born, against all possible misfortune.

"It is before and at the moment of birth that the Evil One is most intent upon doing mischief to human beings, and consequently there is some risk in not having recourse to the special prayers of the Church."

One day Father Paul was seen with a large wound on his forehead. He explained that it was the effect of a blow which the devil had given him.

Father Paul said that one day, after hearing a man's confession, he was forcibly lifted up by the devil to the ceiling of the confessional; at the same time he heard a voice crying out to him, "I am. ..." (giving here the full name of a certain person).

Father Paul once said to a friend, "I have just seen our Savior and immediately afterwards there flied past me a large troop of men on horseback, all clad in armour, like cavaliers of the Middle Ages: they were so many demons! When anything good happens, the devil at once interferes."

There was a talk in the presence of Father Paul of sorcerers and sorceresses, of diabolical Sabbath meetings and interferences of evil spirits. Asked to express his opinion, Father Paul said, "in our days the action of the evil spirit is less to be feared than formerly. His power diminishes with the ever increasing number of priests; for the almost continual offering of the holy sacrifice of the Mass victoriously neutralizes the efforts of Satan."

During a storm that was accompanied by vivid flashes of lightning and the deafening crash of thunder, Father Paul said; "At the last judgment the sentence pronounced against the reprobates will crash like this over their heads, but with a noise a thousand times more terrible."

A young lady writes, "One day at Steenbrugge, Father Paul exhorted me to pray daily in union with the anguish of Jesus crucified and the sorrows of Mary at the foot of the cross. The Rev. Father said that he did it also, and to these prayers he attributed the great number of sinners who came to confession to him; and for that reason the devil had vowed a special hatred against him."

"One night," he added, "the devil came to my cell and leaped on my neck with an indescribable rage, in order to strangle me."
"But, Father!" I exclaimed, "how did you get rid of him?"
"Oh, well, my child, I invoked Jesus in His love and said, 'O love! O infinite love! O ocean of love! How great was your goodness for men to allow Yourself to be tempted in the desert by Satan!' And immediately the devil fled, grumbling in a horrible manner and filling my cell with a pestilential odor. He often comes to torment me."

Father Paul told a sister in Antwerp that the devil gave him volleys of blows, and in a thousand different ways, often handled him very roughly.
"But one must not complain of it," he added, "for if you knew how beautiful heaven is, you would ask to suffer everything in order to get there."

He told her also that the Blessed Virgin appeared to him very frequently; and when he spoke of heaven which, he said, he saw in ecstasy, he would never come to an end.

To another person Father Paul said that on a certain Christmas night, he had never seen the heaven of the elect look so beautiful as on that occasion.

"Last night," Father Paul said to a farmer, "the devil lifted me violently from my bed and threw me rudely on the floor." "Although I am not naturally timid," the farmer replied, "I assure you that, in a similar case, I would tremble in all my limbs. And were you not afraid?"

"Not at all," Father Paul answered, "what we ought to fear far more is the world where devils swarm, and where the devil reigns supreme."

"It is useless to seek perfection among men; perfection is found in heaven alone."

"In the case of ecstatics, if they give into the slightest thought of pride, the devil at once interferes with their actions."

Someone complained to Father Paul about an ecstatic. "Then do not believe," he said, "that these saintly souls have no faults. No saint in this world is exempt from faults."

"The devil cannot endure humility; it is his great enemy; as soon as he perceives its presence anywhere, he becomes helpless and runs away."

"A good way of finding out for sure whether an apparition is diabolical, is to ask the blessing of the being that has appeared; for the devil has no power to impart a blessing."

During a conversation in which Father Paul spoke of the great power of holy water which, through ignorance, is not sufficiently appreciated, some one said to him: —

"Once when I had warts on my hand, a friend assured me that an excellent means of getting rid of them was to plunge these warts into holy water and then make the sign of the cross with that hand. He said I should do this once a day for three days in succession. I followed his advice and the warts disappeared. This remedy received the approval of the Rev. Father.

Father Paul was not pleased to see people enter the church without taking holy water. To a gentleman who did not stop to bless himself he said,
"Take holy water; there at least, the devil is not present."

October 14, 1881, a furious hurricane swept over a building in course of construction, belonging to the Marais Congregation in Bruges. The building was completely overturned so that hardly a stone remained upon a stone. The roof was taken off by one blast, then the solid walls of the grand building were entirely overthrown. This catastrophe astonished even the contractors and builders, and the architect when informed of this misfortune, was so terribly shocked that he died soon after. Father Paul explained the cause of the disaster in these words: —

"This is quickly done. Satan places a demon against each stone and at the first signal, the whole collapses!" The Rev. Father also recommended that one or several medals of St. Benedict be placed within the material of the new building, in order to protect it.

During one winter there was continual bad weather. Now, with the least blast of wind one or more panes of glass were broken in a convent, situated not far from the monastery of Steenbrugge; the glazier alone enjoyed the benefit of these mishaps.
The proper thing to do in this case was to complain to Father Paul; people had to live at a great distance in order not to have recourse to him in every vexatious circumstance. So the sisters went to Father Paul and he said, "I saw a demon in your garden; it is he who makes use of the wind to break your windows. Here is a medal, fasten it to your door on the inside, and fear no more." From that time forward the glazier lost his job of putting in new windows at the convent.

"The Liberals are the devil's sorcerers: they will cut a droll figure once when they arrive in the other world."

"The Nihilists of Russia are a scourge, like the grasshoppers: the more that are imprisoned, the more come."

"Socialism here is but a passing wind. The Jews have their paradise on earth."

"People complain of socialism, but it will spread a great deal more, and this, because people do not sufficiently venerate the Most Holy Sacrament."

On the morning after the elections for the legislature, by which the late "liberal" ministry in Belgium was defeated, Father Paul said, "The liberal party has lived. Now there are but two parties, the Catholics and the Socialists."

"The perfections of God are infinite. In heaven the saints will see the divine perfections succeed each other without ceasing: every moment a new perfection will be revealed to them, and so it will be through all eternity."

A country girl having told Father Paul that she had been warned against the book known as "The Prayers of St. Gertrude," he replied that it was a great mistake and added, "Of all prayer books, this is the most beautiful."

"If it were permitted to one of the elect to live again in this world, he would submit with joy to all the sufferings that men have ever endured here below, in order to add to his merits that which he would acquire by the recital of one Ave Maria."

Father Paul related the following vision to a young lady of Knesselaere: —

"I am in the habit of reciting daily the rosary of our Lady of the Seven Dolors; but one day, when I was on a journey, I unwillingly omitted this pious exercise. The following night the Blessed Virgin appeared to me, her heart pierced with the seven dolors; her eyes were bathed in tears, nor did she utter a word. Having made the sign of the cross, I set out at once to say my rosary, and noticed that the Blessed Virgin joined her hands. Having finished the meditation and prayers of the first group of seven beads, one of the seven dolors of Mary emitted a celestial light. And as I recited the following groups of seven beads, the other six dolors were also illumined with the same splendor.
"Having finally recited three Hail Marys in memory of the tears of the Blessed Virgin, I saw the tears of Mary dissolving into a heavenly smile; the divine Mother greeted me, blessed me and disappeared."

A person living in Thielt reports the following stories as told by Father Paul: —

"'One evening, in 1895, after our spiritual exercises, I was walking through the cloister in the abbey, reciting, according to my custom, three Hail Marys in honor of our Lady to obtain her maternal blessing, when all at once I saw this good Mother clothed in a robe of dazzling white. She approached and made a little cross with her thumb on my forehead. The emotion which I felt is indescribable, and if the apparition had lasted two minutes longer, Father Paul would be no more of this world; for I would not have been able to support this brilliancy any longer.'
"After Father Paul had told me the above, he fell into an ecstasy which lasted about five minutes."

Here are two other visions related by Father Paul to the same person: —

"One day while I knelt in adoration before the Most Holy Sacrament exposed, I saw Jesus standing before me. He wore a white garment, and was of dazzling beauty."

Again: "A very pious young girl was saying the rosary in our church, in honor of the nine choirs of angels. I saw above her head nine silver strings which continually moved up and down. This symbolized the joy felt by the angels of the nine choirs at the homage which was paid to them."

"Father Paul loved to propagate this devotion to the nine choirs of angels."

From a young lady of Heusden (Ghent) we heard the following story:

"At a visit to Father Paul, in 1895, he said to me,
"If I were to tell you something, would you believe me?"
"Yes, Father."
"The Blessed Virgin appeared to me, and before disappearing she placed her hand upon my shoulder."
"He also said to me, 'There are souls in the fire of purgatory who ask your prayers for their deliverance. You knew these persons well, and now they are forgotten by their children.'"
"He also told me that my father is in heaven."

In the confessional, Father Paul said to a friend from Oostcamp: —

"From the time of the Ascension of our Lord, the most Blessed Virgin communicated every day and by a special privilege, the host remained intact within her up to the moment of the next Communion, so that Mary always guarded, in her interior, the humanity and divinity of Jesus Christ; and thus was able to keep up a continual conversation with her Divine Son."

Father Paul said to a person from Oostcamp, "In an ecstasy, a saint has seen the body of St. Joseph preserved intact in a tomb, the site of which is yet unknown. The more the glorious Spouse of the most Blessed Virgin is honored, the sooner will the finding of his body take place, which will be a day of great joy for the Church."

"At the time when the Church is most persecuted, God raises up in the world the greatest number of saints."

To a Trappist lay brother Father Paul once said, "a single act of humility is worth more than fasting a hundred years on water and bread; for humility always remains a virtue, whilst fasting is often accompanied with pride."

"Never has there been so much faith as at the present day."

Some one remarked to the Rev. Father that our generation was not so good as the preceding one. "You cannot say that!" he replied.

"When God works miracles in our favor, He is pleased most often to produce them in a manner which seems quite natural."

"Every communication coming from the Father of Lights is made in clear and very concise terms, leaving no place for doubt or double meaning."

Once when Father Paul was sick, he said, "I cannot ask for my recovery, but others can ask it for me. I can ask everything for others."

Speaking of certain persons whose faithful friendship for himself he praised highly, Father Paul gave the assurance that these friends would never suffer any misfortunes.

"During the consecration of the three Masses on Christmas I obtain everything I asked for."

"In order to be heard, it is not always sufficient only to pray oneself, one should also ask the prayers of others."

The Mother Superior of a convent complained to Father Paul that he came so seldom to help the community with his counsels.
"I am so often in the midst of you without your seeing me," the Rev. Father replied.

The following extract we copied from the letter of Father Paul, addressed from Termonde, Aug. 30, 1894, to a person in Ghent whom he had visited that day: —
"I arrived home safe, without seeing or hearing anything on the way. While you were still looking at me, I was already at home."

Are not these lines calculated to suggest the idea of bilocation?

"It is better to make novenas in the morning than in the evening."

Father Paul advised a countryman to make a novena to St. Benedict.
"I shall have to wait a few days," he replied, "for I have commenced a novena to St. Joseph."
"Nothing prevents you from making the two novenas at the same time, in heaven, there is no jealousy among the saints."

Father Paul blamed those very much, who habitually spent part of the night in work or in pleasure. He said: "The night belongs to God."

Father Paul sometimes made use of pleasantries in order to make people remember his advice. He asked a farmer who went to him to confession, "Until what hour do you stay out in the evening?"
"That depends; when I amuse myself, I do not come home till eleven or midnight."
"How many commandments of God are there?"
"There you see! If it were good not to come home till eleven, there would be eleven commandments . . . Believe me, go to bed at ten, and you will feel much better for it."

In the presence of Father Paul, some one made fun of an absent person who was very scrupulous.
"Scrupulosity," he said, "is one of the saddest maladies. Be very careful not to make fun of scrupulous persons, for you may one day become scrupulous yourself."

A very scrupulous person asked for a way out of her scruples. Father Paul laughingly replied, "Well, then, don't be scrupulous any longer!"

"The good God is not pleased with scrupulous people."

"It is the saints who have to endure the greatest temptations in this world."

The good and saintly Father Paul loved cheerful dispositions. "You will see," he said to some religious, "That in convents and everywhere the persons who are sad are always the least to be recommended. They keep their eyes cast down and give themselves the air of a "Saint-don't-touch-me;" being full of restlessness, nothing gives them pleasure. Always the last where duty calls, they go there without fervor, but with their false air of habitual compunction. Whilst with persons who are always gay and full of joy, work becomes easy and brings forth good and salutary results."

Father Paul opposed making vows. "This often causes trouble later on," he said, "it is preferable to say, 'I resolve to do this or that.'"

A friend asked for prayers to obtain a certain favor. Father Paul replied, "I shall ask for what you demand when Our Lord comes."
Regarding these divine visits Father Paul once said to another friend, in a most suggestive tone of voice, "Have you read how familiarly St. Mechtild conversed with our Lord?"

"The remedy for cancer exists, but is not yet known."

"The physicians know the streets, the places and the houses of the human body quite well, but they do not know their inhabitants."

"When I have to take medicine, I never fail first to dip a medal of St. Benedict into it."

One day in summer, when the Rev. Father was in the garden with his friends, some one cut off a few small branches of a fruit tree and said jokingly, "The tree won't complain of it, it does not feel these cuts."
"You know nothing about it," replied Father Paul in a very suggestive tone.
"Must then everything that has life on earth be subject to the law of suffering?"

"Very often those who retain the goods of others die without making restitution."

"If a sinner were, for a single moment, to see the state of his soul, he would at once die of fright."

To a lady whom he had cured, Father Paul said, "Will you be kind enough to induce all your friends and acquaintances who are sick to come to see me? I shall cure them all!"

"I can obtain nothing for those who have the habit of blaspheming."

Father Paul said that he gave his blessing to his friends three times every day.

"All those who shall have suffered on my account will be associated with me in my glory."

"People will publish the good which I have done, but will be silent as to what I have suffered. . ."

"Only at the last judgment will it be known how much I have suffered," Father Paul said to a friend.

"The simplicity of the just is turned into ridicule," says St. Gregory, and so it was with the good and saintly Father Paul. He was conscious of the raillery, at times very bitter, of which certain people made him.

Expressions of this sort have appeared strange to some readers of the First Edition, and appear to be little in accord with the humility of a saint. But history furnishes many examples of similar expressions from the lips of canonized saints. To cite but one example, the numerous authors who during many centuries have written the life of St. Godelieve of Ghistelles unanimously mention this prediction of the illustrious martyr: "A day will come when I shall be raised above all the women of Flanders," How often have not the saintly souls of this world been, as it were, the mouth-pieces of God? And have not the prophets of the Old Testament been the inspired and docile instruments of which the Almighty made use in order to announce and foretell to the nations His immutable and eternal decrees?

The object, and most probably he also foresaw the injuries which would be heaped on his memory by some of his implacable enemies. Be that as it may, his friends love to recall a very suggestive remark of his, — "My friends will be the last to laugh, and nothing will prevent them from laughing forever."

The good and saintly Father Paul was often calumniated and persecuted. He remarked one day to a friend, —
"Those who dig a pit for me, will themselves fall into a deeper one."

About the year 1888, Father Paul said to a person at Watervliet, that God had decided to punish the whole world with terrible chastisements; but that finally He had spared mankind, in answer to the prayers and penances of one single religious.
Father Paul did not tell the name of this religious.

In the confessional, an ecstatic said to Father Paul that in a dream she had seen the Rev. Father's soul carried to heaven by angels and there placed near the choir of angels. He replied simply, "Yes indeed, my place is there." Then he asked, "Do you know your place in heaven?"
"Well, I know it."

We may here remark that other ecstatics of our country likewise say that the Rev. Father Paul has a high place in heaven, and that he is a very powerful protector. But the Church alone has the authority to confirm these assertions.

To a friend Father Paul said, "Oh! we all know our places in heaven!"

"It is wrong to imagine heaven as a place whose inhabitants enjoy the same happiness. Heaven is a dwelling place where every work of charity, ("werk van liefde,") enjoys an eternal recompense."

In the confessional. Father Paul said to a servant girl from Thielt at the very beginning, "I know everything that you are going to confess, but, nevertheless, you have to tell it yourself."

As an ecstatic was making her confession to Father Paul, he interrupted her, saying, "Do you not see our Lord?"
"But I see Him, He is at your side."

To an ecstatic Father Paul said, "You will not work any miracles during your life-time, but you will after your death."

A short time before his departure from Steenbrugge, on a Sunday at Mass, Father Paul addressed the congregation from the pulpit as follows: —

"I shall not stay here much longer. Let all those who are suffering, or whose hearts are suffering, come to see me; I shall help them all!"

To one of his penitents Father Paul said, "Always obey me blindly, I shall be your guide during my life and after my death."

One day this same person said to the Rev. Father that, if he died, she would deserve to be pitied very much.

"On the contrary," he replied, "it will be so much better for you, when I am in heaven; for then you may ask me continually and my power will be still greater."

To a poor working girl of Thielt Father Paul said, I will protect you all my life, and much more so after my death."

To another poor woman he said, "I will give you a loaf of bread which will never get mouldy, and a cup which will never be drained."

As Father Paul was visiting the wife of a blacksmith in Steenbrugge whose child was about to be buried, he said to her, —

"If I had been allowed to come, your child would not have died."

After a day of consultation, Father Paul was on the point of leaving Antwerp when some one spoke to him of a mother whose child was sick. He replied, "it is a great pity that this child was not brought to me, for all the sick children that came today have been cured."

Surprise was once expressed in the presence of Father Paul at the great number of children he cured.

"It is not surprising at all," he said, "these children have not yet done evil."

Married couples who were desolate because they had no children, also applied for help. But in order to have their wishes granted, the Rev. Father insisted that these couples should come to him in person and ask his prayers.

A friend of Father Paul failed to obtain a good photograph of an artistic object. Having lost patience, he wrote to the Rev. Father and received the following reply: —

"If you think that the devil is interfering in this matter, put a medal on the object that is to be photographed, and all will go well."

Do not forget to attach a medal to your easel, said Father Paul to an artist painter.

While Father Paul was visiting a chateau in the neighborhood of Bruges, he was informed that a friend had met with a railway accident. Father Paul remarked,

"This gentleman had a medal of St. Benedict in his pocket-book: if he had worn it about his neck, he would not have had this accident."

A friend having demanded the prayers of Father Paul for a relative living in Paris, the Father gave him a medal to be sent and earnestly advised him to tell the patient not to put the medal in his pocket-book, but wear it around his neck, as also his scapular, as that was the only proper way of doing to experience the effect of blessed objects.

The friend found out later that the patient in Paris carried his scapular in his pocket-book.

Father Paul strongly disapproved of the manner in which blessed objects, such as scapulars and medals, are sometimes worn around the neck in a covering completely closed. He said that the covering should be open at the lower end; and when he was asked, why this should be so, he simply replied, "That is a mystery."

When Father Paul visited some farmers in Oostcamp, a young lady who was sick asked him to cure her.

"Make use of your medal of St. Benedict and you will get well."

"I don't know where it is. . . "

"What? don't you wear the medal? And I, a religious, would not dare to be without the cross and the medal about my neck; and you, a simple lay person, do not wear it!"

When we arrive up there, St. Peter will ask, "Have you suffered much on earth? If you have, enter; if not, there is no room for you here."

A young girl from Scheepsdaele complained to Father Paul that she had very little time for her devotions, and even the few prayers she did say were said with many distractions.

"Oh! in that case," Father Paul replied, "you can remedy the matter by saying, in the evening, 'May all my imperfections of this day be changed into perfections!'"

A good country woman from Lichtervelde went to Steenbrugge to see Father Paul. He said to her, "You find it very difficult to pray, don't you?" "Yes, Father!"

Well, then, look here: when you wish to pray, place your hand on your heart and say, 'Good Jesus, You know very well what that means!' That is enough, for it says everything.

"When you say the Our Father, say it with the intention of obtaining the highest place in heaven."

A servant girl said to Father Paul, "I am sometimes afraid of going mad."

"No, no!" the Rev. Father replied, "you will never go mad: you are not proud enough."

Father Paul did not read any newspapers. "What's the use," he said. "What they print today is denied tomorrow." And showing his crucifix, he said, "This is my newspaper."

Without the murderous attack of which he was the victim, the President of the French Republic, Carnot, would never have been converted.'"

A young girl inquired if the misfortunes that befell her family were divine punishments.

"No," replied Father Paul, "they are trials which the good God sends you in order to make you a little more like Him." Thereupon the girl asked what would become of her.

"An angel in heaven," he said.

To a friend from Oostcamp he once said, "Ik weet alles regtstreeks van onzen Lieven Heer." "I get all my information directly from our dear Lord."

Conversing with some friends. Father Paul asked them what they would do to protect themselves against a mad dog. After every one had declared his plan. Father Paul, in his turn said, "As for me, I would take a medal of St. Benedict in my hand, and would pass on quietly, without troubling myself: the mad dog would not come near."

We may remark here that at the celebrated basilica of St. Hubert, in Luxemburg, which is frequented by people bitten by mad beasts, medals of St. Benedict are distributed.

Apropos of the great St. Hubert is it not strange to see of late so many people of Belgium and the north of France, when bitten by dogs, have recourse to the Pasteur treatment which does not guarantee a cure? Numerous cases prove that. Whereas the experience of twelve centuries conclusively shows that the cure ("la taille") at St. Hubert works infallibly!

A young man having told Father Paul that he had been sent in ridicule a sarcastic caricature, because, when invited to a feast on a fast day, he had abstained from forbidden meats, the Rev. Father replied that this derision would merit for him and his family great honor in the other world.

Entering a convent. Father Paul asked the Mother Superior, "Have you already thanked the good God for all the pains which He has sent you? . . . No? Well, then, I shall do so for you."

A young man wrote to Termonde, asking that his mother be cured. Father Paul replied: "in answer to the prayer which I have offered, your mother ought to be completely restored by this time."

Here is another proof of the goodness and patience of Father Paul. Speaking of a family in Antwerp, he confided to a friend that these good people consulted him in all their affairs, and added, "They would not change a nail in their house without asking me if I approved of the change."

When Father Paul refused to be interested in an affair, it was a bad sign. Whilst the Count of Chambord was still living, a visitor spoke to him of that pretender to the throne of France, hoping to receive some light as to his chances of success. Father Paul coldly remarked, "I do not occupy myself with this matter."

The New Year's letters which Father Paul sent to his friends always contained, under the guise of good wishes, real seasonable gifts; for all the good things he wished were realized. To give but one example. Writing to business people in Contich, Father Paul said, "I wish you the payment of all bills outstanding." These people had, in fact, debtors of long standing, but had given up all hope of ever receiving payment. However, soon after receiving the good wishes of Father Paul, the old debts were unexpectedly paid.

A religious was preaching a retreat at Thielt, and a servant girl had been present at the opening sermon in which the preacher said that the souls going to heaven were as few in number as the leaves that remain on the trees in winter. This remark caused so great a displeasure to the woman that she stayed away from the rest of the sermons. When she mentioned this occurrence later on to Father Paul, he said,

"You did right, for in making such a statement the preacher outraged the infinite goodness of God."

Father Paul was an excellent patron of the post office. The number of letters which he answered is incredible. There are many friends of the Rev. Father who have saved three, four or five hundred of his letters. Generally, a letter of the Rev. Father contained from twenty to thirty small lines written in a style as concise as it was familiar. He made use of odds and ends of all kind of paper, seldom using an entire letter sheet, and wrote standing; or, as he himself once told the sisters in a convent, he would kneel on the floor on one knee and write upon the other. . .

A friend seeing him overwhelmed with business, offered to act as his secretary.

"Impossible!" Father Paul replied, "it is a question here of heavenly affairs."

A young man who wished to marry a Parisian, asked Father Paul if he considered her a suitable choice from a religious and moral point of view. The Father replied, "T' is eerste klasse voor Parijs." "It is first class for Paris."

A young man besought Father Paul to tell him who the person was that he ought to marry. "The good God never tells that beforehand," he replied.

A rich young lady was praised very much for her great devotion to good works. Father Paul simply remarked, "Zy moet wel!" "It is her duty!"

It was one of the dearest wishes of the good and saintly Father Paul to crown the series of his works by the foundation of a beautiful Abbey at Antwerp. All the necessary means had been abundantly provided, and his numerous friends of that wealthy commercial metropolis hoped to see him soon establish his residence in their midst; they already calculated the immense good which the presence of the celebrated Benedictine would procure for their city. But a determined opposition on the part of the secular clergy caused the failure of that beautiful project. Father Paul resigned himself with humility, although, as he himself said, he could have overthrown all opposition by one word.

As a matter of fact; speaking of this project to his friends from Antwerp, the Rev. Father told them that all he needed to do, was to apply directly to the Pope, Leo XIII. He added:—

"I know His Holiness, and he knows me. . . . The Pope is a saint."

Speaking once, in detail, of facts referring to the first centuries of the Christian era, and wishing to impress upon his hearers how he came to know these facts, Father Paul said, "This is not difficult; for God, there is neither past or future, everything is present to Him."

Father Paul generally declined to answer useless requests or those that were too worldly. He related one day that he received a letter from America with a request for prayers that the writer might win a big prize in a lottery. The letter remained unanswered.

Father Paul said to a friend from Oostcamp, "It has never happened to me that I prayed for a recruit who recommended himself to me, without having obtained for him freedom from military service."

A friend wrote to the Rev. Father asking him to obtain a good Dumber for a recruit. Father Paul replied that the person must himself ask him for it.

But sometimes a request made through a third party was favorably received.

Speaking of France, Father Paul said that this country was going to be purified by great chastisements. In Flemish, "Dat nest moet gezuiverd worden."

Speaking of the end of the world, Father Paul said, "I think that our Lord came to redeem mankind in the middle of time."

If this opinion is prophetic, the world would yet exist for about two thousand years.

In his prophecies which have already been fulfilled. Father Paul most frequently employed this expression "I think that...."

"The Bible," Father Paul said, "contains no error, but. . . men know nothing."

To preachers he said, "It is necessary to return to the simplicity of the Gospel."

"There are no two angels alike in heaven. How great then must the power of God be to have been able to create, in a single instant all these innumerable legions of heavenly spirits!"

In Antwerp, Father Paul said of a young girl who was recommended to him in her sickness, "I can do nothing for her because she consults a fortune-teller."

As Father Paul was once quizzed about the lamentable state of his old hat, he remarked with a smile, "I put up with this one, in order to have a fine one in the other world."

During a visit paid by Father Paul to some good friends of his, a young man inadvertently overturned a beautiful porcelain vase which broke into a hundred pieces. At the very moment Father Paul said to the young man in a low voice, "Ask now that the vase be restored to its former state."

But as the attention of the young man was turned elsewhere he neglected the Father's obliging invitation. Later on, when they recalled the words of the good religious, they regretted very much not to have seized the occasion of seeing the performance of a miracle.

A young lady visiting Father Paul was invited by him to go to the church, saying that she would see our Lord in person in the sacred host which was exposed. But as she did not take his suggestion seriously, she replied that she had no need of seeing such a wonder, in order to believe in the Real Presence.

"Very well," Father Paul said, "Your faith causes me great joy."

After the death of the Rev. Father, this young lady, hearing of the great number of persons who had received a like invitation from Father Paul and had actually seen our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, cried out with most keen regret, "Oh I if I had only known!"

"When I distribute Holy Communion," Father Paul said to a friend from Oostcamp, "it is the Infant Jesus in person, that I see in the host."

On the day of his death. Father Paul, literally exhausted, was hardly able to reply by a feeble sign to the questions that were put to him.

A lay-brother said to him, "When you are in heaven, ask that I may join you soon." Making a supreme effort, the good Father found strength enough to reply slowly, "You cannot demand such a thing."

"But at least," the lay-brother said, "Will you demand that I may be near you in heaven?"


Father Paul once said, I have been persecuted during my life... and I will still be persecuted after my death!"

"We must not want to penetrate the mysteries of religion, because that awakens pride. The bad angels did so, and they ended by saying: "We shall be like unto the Most High!"