Saturday, July 18, 2009
"The Carmelite apostolate is based on a fervent inner life that makes the soul powerful over the Heart of God. This power comes from the total gift of self, made as perfect as possible by means of the evangelical counsels. Carmelites are entirely devoted to Our Lord, sparing nothing in order to give to Him.
The first thing needed to move the Heart of God and help save souls is to become intimate with Him. This friendship makes one's prayer and penance powerful, and prayer and penance are the interior tools of the apostolate. 'As my whole yearning was, and still is, that, as He has so many enemies and so few friends, these last should be trusty ones, I determined to do the little that was in me - namely, to follow the evangelical counsels as perfectly as I could, and to see that these few nuns who are here should do the same, confiding in the great goodness of God, Who never fails to help those who resolve to forsake everything for His sake. As they are all that I have ever painted them as being in my desires, I hoped that their virtues would more than counteract my defects, and I should thus be able to give the lord some pleasure.' Pleasing Our Lord one becomes dear to His Heart; then prayer will really have power. '...And all of us, by busying ourselves in prayer for the champions of the Church, and for the preachers and theologians who defend her, should do everything we could to aid this Lord of mine Who is attacked with so much cruelty by those to whom He has shown so much good.'
So the tools of the Carmelite apostolate - prayer and penance - get their power from the soul's love for God."
-- The Way of Prayer by Fr Gabriel of St Mary Magdalen, ocd