Friday, September 30, 2011

St. Bernard on the divine compassibility

"God is impassible, but not incompassible [(impassibilis est Deus, sed non incompassibilis)]. . . ."

     St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Sermones super Cantica canticorum 26.5 (S[ancti] Bernardi opera 1, Sermones super Cantica canticorum 1-35 (Rome:  Editiones Cistercienses, 1957), 173, ll. 16-17; Bernhard von Clairvaux:  Sämtliche Werke, lateinisch-deutsch 5, p. 394, ll. 16-17; PL 183, col. 906).  My source, Pope Bendict XVI, in his Jesus of Nazareth:  from the baptism in the Jordan to the transfiguration, trans. Adrian J. Walker (New York, NY:  Doubleday, 2007), renders this as follows:  "God cannot suffer, but he can 'suffer with'" (87).

Thursday, September 29, 2011

"a contest in generosity"

"As he left the chapel that morning the saint could not restrain his gladness.  'Oh!  how beautiful is religion!' he exclaimed.  'I was thinking a little while ago that between our Lord and these good religious, his mystic brides, there took place a contest in generosity.  But, do what they may, our Lord invariably proves the winner.  The Sisters said:  'I renew my vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience.'  Yet it was they who received most, for I, in my turn, said:  'May the Body of our Lord Jesus Christ keep thy soul unto life everlasting.'"

The Curé d'Ars, as quoted by Abbé Francis Trochu, in his The Curé d'Ars: St Jean-Marie-Baptiste Vianney (1786-1859) according to the Acts of the process of canonization and numerous hitherto unpublished documents, trans. Dom Ernest Graf, O.S.B. (London: Burns Oates & Washbourne Ltd., 1951 [1927]), 370-371.