Tag Archives: modesty


“For whom does God reserve His favours, His pledges of predestination to glory? Always and only for the humble, for those who think themselves only worthy of contempt, who abide tranquilly in the shade of modesty. Is it not of humility that it is written: ‘God considers closely the humble, but regards the proud from afar.’ What a thunderbolt for insensate pleasure-seekers, who believe themselves dust destined to dust! What a comforting ray for those delicate consciences which know only their faults, their weakness, their inner miseries!


Is not God, Who beholds with an auspicious eye the prostration of the humble, more than the sun directing its rays of heat on the hidden seed of a flower? Is not God, who regards from afar the pretensions of the worldly and self-satisfied, the lightning bursting through the clouds to wither the haughty cedars? HUMILIA RESPICIT: God regards the humble. How admirably this expresses His thought for the humble, His care for them, His watchfulness on their behalf!


Is it not natural, besides; to be attentive to the one who neglects self, to think of one who forgets self, and to neglect one who is so full of himself, that there is no room in his heart for admiration of others? Pride is always selfish, and selfishness turns aside sympathy. If you are self-reliant, your indifference to others will be returned in kind. Others are attentive to us only when we forget self. Affection is only offered to him who believes himself in need of it, and who, consequently, is not self-reliant, but relies on God. The cry of need is heard a thousand times better than that of self-reliance.

If the myosotis did not hide timidly in the grass, it would lose its right to the title of ‘forget-me-not,’ and the moss which shelters it would be replaced by the scythe of the harvester.


O sad hearts, dissatisfied with yourselves, because you know your wretchedness, that is, the gaping void of your life, almost equal to that of the tomb! Let the silence of your humility speak – and behold! you are surrounded with esteem, with veneration, with sympathetic interest of all. It is God who comes, with His following of noble spirits and true hearts, to salute you, to applaud you, to uplift you by His loving attention:h HUMILIA RESPICIT!”
– Laverty & Sons (eds), 1905


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Holy Spirit,
eternal Love of the Father and the Son,
kindly bestow on us
the fruit of CHARITY,
that we may be united to You by Divine love;
the fruit of JOY,
that we may be filled with holy consolation;
the fruit of PEACE,
that we may enjoy tranquillity of soul;
and the fruit of PATIENCE,
that we may endure humbly
everything that may be opposed to our own desires.
Divine Spirit,
please infuse in us
the fruit of BENIGNITY,
that we may willingly relieve our neighbour’s necessities;
the fruit of GOODNESS,
that we may be benevolent toward all;
the fruit of LONGANIMITY,
that we may not be discouraged by delay
but may persevere in prayer;
the fruit of MILDNESS,
that we may subdue every rising of ill temper,
stifle every murmur,
and repress the susceptibilities of our nature
in all our dealings with our neighbour.
Creator Spirit,
graciously impart to us
the fruit of FIDELITY,
that we may rely with assured confidence
on the Word of God;
the fruit of MODESTY,
that we may order our exterior regularly;
and the fruits of CONTINENCE and CHASTITY,
that we may keep our bodies in such holiness
as benefits Your temple,
so that having by Your assistance
preserved our hearts pure on earth,
we may merit in Jesus Christ,
according to the words of the Gospel,
to see God eternally
in the glory of His Kingdom.


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I. Contemplate the child Jesus in the stable in Bethlehem. O, what marvel of love for the entire world and all heaven to see, to witness the infinite God in the form of a humble child, crying, weeping and shivering with cold in a lowly manger! O, how that beautiful child wins the love of men and angels! O, how powerfully He draws all souls towards His love! By virtue of love then, unite your heart to the Heart of the child Jesus, and live with Him always; but how? you ask. By practising beautiful Christian simplicity, for Jesus said, “Unless you become like a little child you cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven.” And so He Himself, O, infinite condescension, became a child, giving us an example of that simplicity that He asks of us, if we are to have paradise.

Therefore, O Christian, be simple, become a child together with that heavenly child. May your heart be far from all worldly worries and all desires of the flesh and may you not fall back into them. May your mind be pure in its thoughts, always just and right in its ideas and always holy in its intentions. May you always speak sincerely, never lying or being duplicitous, and with the correct Christian prudence, so that your heart may be in your speech and sincerity in your heart. May you seek to do nothing other than what God wishes, what pleases Him and what gives Him glory. May your behaviour be far from all worldly affectation, may it be honest and good. So, in the words of St Paul, you will be a child of God in the midst of a corrupt and depraved generation, and God who loves to be one with simple souls, will enrich you with His light and blessings!

II. Contemplate Jesus, who lived a hidden life for thirty years in the village of Nazareth. Where were His infinite majesty and greatness? Where His wisdom, light and infinite glory? All was hidden in the shadows and silence of that tiny hamlet. The omnipotent hands that made the heavens and the earth were occupied by simple work, and the world saw Him as just the son of a carpenter. Become one with the young Jesus then and begin an inner life hidden in God. Do not allow yourself to be enticed or trapped by any exterior thing, stay close to that infinite goodness that is the divine Heart, determined to live quietly united to Jesus, until living without Him seems impossible, as impossible as to live without light or air.

Always have Jesus Christ in your mind, Jesus Christ in your heart and Jesus Christ before your eyes, for He is your beginning, your middle and your end, and so your life must be in Him. Be happy only with Him, thinking nothing of the greatness and honour the world offers, which all passes away. What a blessing for you, if you are able to live hidden with the Heart of Jesus! Even were you poor, despised and suffering in the eyes of the world, before God you would be a royal bride, ineffably glorious and beautiful.

III. Contemplate Jesus, who for three years walked the paths of Palestine showering blessings and working miracles, illuminating and consoling the people. He, infinite wisdom and truth, teaches you through His public ministry, the way to conduct all your actions. He did all things well, ‘bene omnia fecit’, these words are the praise of the Holy Spirit for Him. And you too, unite your heart to His Heart and seek to do all things well. And do them well as a reflection of Jesus Christ. He was a man, He worked, walked, rested, ate, slept and talked, and in all these ordinary actions there was perfect love, devotion and sacrifice, and so He became the example to you and the source of all good.

Do all things well, think like Jesus Christ, love like Jesus Christ, speak with the language of Jesus Christ, see all things with the eyes of Jesus Christ, and put Jesus Christ first, allowing yourself to be led by Him in all things and behave in all things as He would. Do all things well, and take Him as a father who watches over you, as a friend who goes with you, as a teacher who corrects you, as a benefactor who favours you, and as God who judges you. Do all things well, with order, tranquillity, diligence and good intentions. Have within you that mixture of serenity and certainty, modesty, humility and sweetness that can be called Christian goodness, so that you will be able to say, as St Paul did, “I live, but it is not I who live, but Christ who lives in me, and I live in Him.”
– Mons Nicola Tafuri


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