“And thus it fell out that on a day when St Lutgarde (a 13th Century Religious Sister) was speaking with a sister in religion on heavenly and spiritual matters, and searching for fresh means to appease the wrath of God, they were both overcome with so intense a longing for the salvation and rescue of sinners, that for very pity their hearts did faint away, and they were consumed with hot and fiery love for God and their fellowmen.
Even as they spoke together quickly and eagerly, they were both overpowered by ecstasy, and in that state lay as dead during four whole days. But while their bodies lay thus, they themselves were led in spirit into the clear light of eternal joy, and they saw the whole heavenly host, and the Most Holy, Undivided Trinity.
During the four long unbroken days when the holy servant of God and her spiritual sister lay on the ground as though dead, they saw how the Heavenly Court was so exquisitely adorned and ordered with such beauty and regularity that their hearts were not able to grasp it nor their lips to express it.
They saw how the Most Holy Trinity lit up the whole of Heaven with an unutterably clear light; and how the noble Queen Mary, as Mother of the eternal Wisdom, shone with a radiance incomparably more beautiful than does the hottest mid-day sun.
And this all high and holy Court resounds with the most entrancing music, and with the songs of the dear Angels.
THERE the holy patriarchs and prophets, who had foretold the coming of the Redeemer and longed after it with so great a longing, lifted up their voices in merry gladness.
THERE the holy Apostles sit as Judges, because they forsook all on earth to follow Christ, their Lord and Master; and beside them sit the Evangelists, who did so faithfully transmit to us the teaching, life, and miracles of Christ, leaving behind them a record for all future generations of men.
THERE the glorious martyrs reign in triumph – they who yielded up their bodies to a thousand kinds of pain and martyrdom for love of Christ, and by the shedding of their blood deserved to win a heavenly crown.
THERE stand all glad and joyous the holy priests and confessors who witnessed to the Name of God openly and boldly; and by their side are all the holy virgins, who led down here a life austere and upright, chaste and mortified, silent and hidden.
And all these together encircle the vast hall of Heaven like a garland of beautiful red roses and glorious white lilies, filling it with the sweetest perfume, all the while they sing to the Most High God their ceaseless hymn of praise.
Last of all, St Lutgarde and the Sister saw a great company that no man could number, who by the earnest pursuit of good works had laid hold of salvation, and through the conquest of self, the world, and Satan, had deserved to enter in the company of the blessed.
Now it was revealed to our Saints that in one particular quarter of the Holy City reigned the greatest joy of all the Heavenly Court. Here existed, as it were, a very overflow of happiness, for here the all-sweet odour of Divine love and of every conceivable goodness and virtue, was united to the most soul-entrancing music of the great Song of Praise.
The least little gleam from this spot surpasses all the gleam of a hundred thousand earthly suns. So far indeed does it surpass them, that it was quite useless to try to
THE PRIVILEGES AND LIBERTIES OF THE HEAVENLY COURT
In Heaven many privileges and liberties are enjoyed, to wit:
1. Love without Suffering
2. Eternal Life without Death
3. Eternal Youth without Age
4. Riches without Poverty
5. Unfailing Health without Sickness
6. Unspeakable Joy without Grief
7. Everlasting Peace, and the Perpetual Grace of God.