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Keep Them Dearest Lord

Keep them, I pray Thee, dearest Lord,
Keep them, for they are Thine–
Thy priests whose lives burn out before
Thy consecrated shrine.
Keep them, for they are in the world,
Though from the world apart;
When earthly pleasures tempt, allure,–
Shelter them in Thy heart.
Keep them, and comfort them in hours
Of loneliness and pain,
When all their life of sacrifice
For souls seems but in vain.
Keep them, and O remember, Lord,
They have no one but Thee,
Yet they have only human hearts,
With human frailty.
Keep them as spotless as the Host,
That daily they caress;
Their every thought and word and deed,
Deign, dearest Lord, to bless.

–The Pieta Prayer Book

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Our thoughts turn to the passion and death of our Lord, and we long to share his pain with him. What is the pain of Jesus? It is the pain of loving and not being loved in return. He has loved us with an everlasting love, and what do we give him in return? We allow our minds to be preoccupied with little things and so spend many hours without thinking of Jesus. And yet our hearts and minds, bodies and souls, belong only to him. Let us meditate on the sufferings of Christ each day.”

–from Lent with St. Teresa of Calcutta

**

“Therefore, my brother, scorned as you are by men, lashed as it were by God, do not despair. Do not be depressed. Do not let your weakness make you impatient. Instead, let the serenity of your spirit shine through your face. Let the joy of your mind burst forth. Let words of thanks break from your lips.”

— St. Peter Damian

**

“Who art thou, that thou shouldst be afraid of a mortal man? Today he is, and tomorrow he appears no more. Fear God, and thou shalt have no need of being afraid of man. What can anyone do against thee by his words or injuries? He rather hurts himself than thee, nor can he escape the judgment of God whoever he be. See thou have God before thine eyes and do not contend with complaining words. And if at present thou seem to be overcome, and to suffer a confusion which thou has not deserved, do not repine at this and do not lessen thy crown by impatience.”

— Thomas á Kempis

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