Consider the example of the Saints on all sides, what have they
not done in order to love God and lead a devout life?
Call to mind the Martyrs in their invincible firmness, and the
tortures they endured in order to maintain their resolutions;
remember the matrons and maidens, whiter than lilies in their
purity, ruddier than the rose in their love, who at every age,
from childhood upward, bore all manner of martyrdom sooner than
forsake their resolutions, not only such as concerned their
profession of faith, but that of devotion; some dying rather than
lose their virginity, others rather than cease their works of
mercy to the sick and sorrowful. Truly the frail sex has set forth
no small courage in such ways.
Consider all the Saintly Confessors, how heartily they despised
the world, and how they stood by their resolutions, taken
unreservedly and kept inviolably. Remember what S. Augustine says
of his mother Monica, of her determination to serve God in her
married life and in her widowhood; and S. Jerome and his beloved
daughter S. Paula amid so many changes and chances. What may we
not achieve with such patterns before our eyes?
They were but what we are, they wrought for the same God,
seeking the same graces; why may not we do as much in our own
state of life, and according to our several vocations, on behalf
of our most cherished resolutions and holy profession of faith?