Friday, May 14, 2010

Daily - 5/14/10

Over the last couple of years, I've learned the value of studying the lives of the Saints. Here's a great explanation from St. Alphonsus Ligouri, Doctor of the Church:


During our sojourn in this world, we should learn from the saints now in heaven, how to love God. The pure and perfect love of God they enjoy there, consists in uniting themselves perfectly to his will. It would be the greatest delight of the seraphs to pile up sand on the seashore or to pull weeds in a garden for all eternity, if they found out such was God’s will. Our Lord himself teaches us to ask to do the will of God on earth as the saints do it in heaven: “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”

Because David fulfilled all his wishes, God called him a man after his own heart: “I have found David . . . a man according to my own heart, who shall do all my wills.” David was always ready to embrace the divine will, as he frequently protested: “My heart is ready, O God, my heart is ready.” He asked God for one thing alone—to teach him to do his will: “Teach me to do thy will.”

- St. Alphonsus Ligouri, Uniformity with God's Will . 17th Century.

Reading what the saints have to say teaches me that a life of holiness is possible for anyone. My personal favorites are St. Teresa of Avila, St. John of the Cross, St. Francis de Sales, and St. Alphonsus Liguori.

There is a tremendous wealth of spiritual instruction from Doctors of the Church, Saints, Religious, and gifted laity that have been preserved over the centuries. Many of these writings are available for free online, either as web-based texts or files that can be either read online or downloaded for free. See the links below to get started.

Catholic Treasury Online Library -- contains 25 spiritual classics written by Doctors of the Church, Saints, and the laity. Many of these books have been treasured in the Catholic Church for centuries and contain timeless information and teaching on spiritual development.

Catholic Planet e-Library -- Contains electronic books that are available as free downloads from the Catholic Planet web site. Most of these files are in Adobe's PDF format.

Catholic Spiritual Direction Online Books -- This site provides 20 electronic books for download from an All Star list of Saints.