"Before a man chooses his confessor, he ought to think well about it, and pray about it also; but when he has once chosen, he ought not to change, except for most urgent reasons, but put the utmost confidence in his director."

St Philip Neri

* * *

"A man should keep himself down, and not busy himself in mirabilibus super se."

St Philip Neri

* * *

"This is the greatest wisdom -- to seek the kingdom of heaven through contempt of the world. "

Thomas á Kempis

* * *

 

St. Catherine of Siena  (1347-1380)
 Doctor of the Church

 
THE DIALOGUE OF ST CATHERINE OF SIENA

Dictated by her, while is a state of ecstasy, to her secretaries, and completed in the year of Our Lord 1370.

A TREATISE OF DISCRETION

16. How the fruits of this tree are as diverse as are the sins; and first, of the sin of sensuality.


"The fruits of this death-giving tree, are as diverse as sins are diverse. See that some of these fruits are the food of beasts who live impurely, using their body and their mind like a swine who wallows in mud, for in the same way they wallow in the mire of sensuality.

"Oh, ugly soul, where have you left your dignity? You were made sister to the angels, and now you are become a brute beast. To such misery come sinners, notwithstanding that they are sustained by Me, who am Supreme Purity, notwithstanding that the very devils, whose friends and servants they have become, cannot endure the sight of such filthy actions.

"Neither does any sin, abominable as it may be, take away the light of the intellect from man, so much as does this one. This the philosophers knew, not by the light of grace, because they had it not, but because nature gave them the light to know that this sin obscured the intellect, and for that reason they preserved themselves in continence the better to study.

"Thus also they flung away their riches in order that the thought of them should not occupy their heart. Not so does the ignorant and false Christian, who has lost grace by sin."