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A Program of Spiritual Formation for Candidates to the Priesthood

The Lay Monastic Community of Caryana










Strive towards charity, the  mother of virtue and humility, the foundation of all virtues. Hold on to them and, with the Lord's help, preserve them. Only those who hold onto these two virtues can approach the Lord's birthday with assurance.

Fast, make vigils and pious mortifications; these weaken the body but cleanse the heart; these weaken the limbs but strengthen the conscience. Sins of desire are weakened by the weariness of the bodies. So, mortifications serve their purpose. . .they make us anticipate death.

Humility consumes sins and, as we torment the body voluntarily, the fear of death is assuaged. For he who condemns himself will make God pity him. If you acknowledge your sins, God will forgive you.

In curing the sickness of the soul, let's follow the rule of medicine. When the sickness is only on the skin, we merely apply an ointment on the skin. But if the illness is within the body, treatment is more severe. And so, if the sins are slight, like a sin in speech or some censurable desire, these could be removed by daily prayer and secret satisfaction. But if the sin is serious, like a lie, these cannot be removed by the usual moderate secret satisfaction. The cure must be more serious, sharper and public. If you have ruined others, you must now edify many. Man loves to deceive himself in that, feeling a burning disease within him, he merely applies an ointment.

Mortal sin kills the soul. So we must wail over our soul as a mother weeps with a broken heart over the loss of her only son. Tears are the only way to revive a soul killed by sin. And this prayer of tears must be accompanied by fasting and good works. "God bestows His favor on the lowly." "Love covers a multitude of sins."







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                                                                                        - Teresa of Avila


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