Renewing Our Commitment To Listen Faithfully To The Word of God


My dear ones,

Our spiritual life depends on the practice of listening to the Word of God, and especially, to our divine calling. It is all about our abandonment to the words God has spoken to us. The Bible reports that the prophet Samuel did not let a single word spoken to him by God fall to nothing. Can we say the same of ourselves? How often have we spent the time we devote to meditation, reading the circular letters carefully and piously? Do you fulfil your obligation to read the Statute every month (I am speaking here especially to those of you with vows), and if so, how do you read it? Do we often make the examination of conscience using the format of the green manual?

To spend much time speaking about many different subjects is a temptation; it is the temptation to shirk the most important duty: that of listening to the word that God has spoken to us personally, as consecrated members of the Community. I feel that I have betrayed you, by spending too much time rambling on about many different subjects and I feel that I have hindered your response to the Lord because I have diverted your attention from what is truly important: your fundamental commitment to accomplish God's will to the end, and what God wants us to do is clearly stated in the Statute of the CFD and in my Circular Letters.

If groups are not too scattered geographically, it would be a good idea to have all members of a Family gather together on the occasion of the monthly retreat, and it would good to privilege selected articles of the Statute as the main subject of our meditations. During the Retreat, silence shall be observed and at least one circular letter shall be read. At the end of the Retreat, a group examination of conscience shall be made following the format of the Manual. The retreat shall conclude either with the long formula of consecration, or the vows' formula.

Perhaps I should have written this circular letter earlier. If so, please forgive me… Please receive my words with docility and humility. They are intended as a reminder to all to seek interior renewal and to respond humbly and faithfully to our divine call.

The Lord called us long ago and yet we realize that we are still at the beginning of our journey! Perhaps our scarce generosity is the reason for this? Or perhaps it is the fact that everyone has been unfaithful? I feel that I am responsible and guilty of this more than anyone else. For this very reason, I ask God and you to forgive me. In union with your spirit and with the help of your prayers and your patience, today I promise the Lord to be more faithful and generous.

Like you, even I am bound to observe the very words you have received, words you have received before I have…

As I reread this morning a few pages of this booklet of circular letters, I sensed the gravity of my lack of virtues and I felt how guilty my life was. If you forgive me, then that is a guarantee, I believe, that God too has forgiven me. Your prayer is the only thing that gives me hope, hope to resume my journey towards holiness once again.

Please be generous with me. If it is true that preferential love must be shown to the weakest souls, then I am one among them... I hope that my spiritual failure does not bring harm to you. I hope that it does not hinder your spiritual progress or close your hearts to love, or, worse of all, prevent you from making the most of the Community, as an instrument of divine grace. Indeed, God willed it to be so when he planted the initial seed from which the Community sprouted and grew. Grave is the moment in which we now live! Is it perhaps our wish to make the Church suffer even more than it does on account of our infidelity? Or should our wish be to work towards her renewal as instruments of God? May God grant us humility and love, docility and generosity, and the grace to respond promptly to the call of the Holy Spirit. May God make us saints!

The Father
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