Appeal to Priests written by Venerable Mother Louise Margaret de la Touche

“The Book of Infinite Love,” Second Part, Chapter XII, “Sacred Heart,” Section IX, pp. 102-106:

“On the vigil of His dolorous Passion, Jesus Christ, assembling His apostles around Him, invited them to the Eucharistic banquet, and, having marked them with the sacred sign of the Priesthood, He revealed to them His Heart.

“Indeed, is not this sublime discourse, which followed the Last Supper and from which Infinite Love poured forth in divine abundance, the revelation of the Heart of Jesus Himself? One part of this discourse is addressed to all the faithful; but in how many passages does not Jesus address Himself to His new priests who have just been consecrated by Himself?

“It is to all souls that He gives the commandment of mutual charity, not as it had been promulgated at first on Mount Sinai: ‘Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself,’ but in a new and more perfect manner: ‘As I have loved you, thus you shall love others,’ that is to say, more than yourselves, even to giving your life for your brethren.

“It is still to all souls that He addresses Himself when, to strengthen their faith, He affirms His divinity. ‘You believe in God, believe also in Me.’ ‘He that seeth Me, seeth My Father also.’ ‘Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father in Me” (Jn 14:9-10)?

“But it is to His priests alone that He addresses these sweet words: ‘I will not now call you servants, for the servant knoweth not what his lord doth. But I have called you friends; because all things whatsoever I have heard of My Father, I have made known to you’ (Jn 15:15).

“And continuing His address to them, He prepares them, He encourages them to endure without failing the persecutions which await them. He consoles them by announcing to them the coming of the Spirit of Love and Truth. He assures them of His love, and strengthens them with ineffable tenderness in advance against trouble and discouragement: ‘These things I have spoken to you that in Me you may have peace. In the world you shall have distress; but have confidence, I have overcome the world’ (Jn 16:33).

“Unable to contain in His Heart the flood of love which urged Him, Jesus Christ sends up to His Father an ardent prayer for His dear apostles: ‘I pray for them, I pray not for the world, but for them whom Thou hast given Me: because they are Thine. Holy Father keep them in Thy name, whom Thou hast given Me: that they may be one as We also are’ (Jn 17: 9,11).

“He returns unceasingly with adorable insistence to this supernatural union which priests have with Him: ‘I in them and Thou in Me’ (Jn 17:23). And He ends by asking His Father to love His priests with the same love, with which He loves Him and to see Himself in them: ‘I have made known Thy name to them and will make it known: that the love wherewith Thou hast loved Me, may be in them, and I in them’ (Jn 17:26).

“Is not the infinitely good Heart of Jesus revealed to us by these words? He does not wish to be the sole object of the Infinite Love of the Father; He wishes that His priests, His friends, His brothers, His privileged ones share it. He wishes that Infinite Love flow on them, transform them, unite them to Him in the tenderest, closest and strongest manner that can be expressed, and He wishes that they may be united among themselves in such a manner that henceforth they may form but one with Him and His divine Father. Never during His life had the divine Master in such a manner revealed the inmost sentiments of His Heart to His beloved disciples; never had He so strongly attracted them to love Him by showing them the strength and the infinite sweetness of His love for them. If Christ makes Himself so importunate on the evening of the Last Supper, it is because He is on the eve of His great sufferings, it is because He sees that His new priests are on the point of passing through the fire of persecution and that they are charged with a great mission to be fulfilled. He endeavours to steel their courage by contact with His own invincible Love. He seeks to enlighten their minds and warm their hearts by revealing to them the divine fire which consumes His Own.

“During the course of the ages, this love of the Heart of Jesus for His priests has not grown cold, and He has never ceased to give the most touching proofs of it.

“When Jesus Christ wished to reveal anew His love for the world in order to rekindle in it the fire of love, when in the shadow of the cloister of Paray Ie Monial, He displayed the flames of His Sacred Heart and dictated His promises, there was a special promise for His priests: ‘My sweet Saviour gave me to understand,’ said St. Margaret Mary, ‘that those who labour for the salvation of souls will have the art of touching the most hardened hearts and will work with marvellous success, if they themselves are penetrated with a tender devotion to His divine Heart.’

“And is the Heart of Jesus less ardent now? On the contrary, does He not urge us at the beginning of this twentieth century to open souls to the divine Inundations of Infinite Love?

“From the height of His throne of glory, from the depth of His solitary and too much abandoned tabernacles, this adorable Saviour has seen humanity led astray by an impulse of independence, shake off the beneficent yoke of His law and stray from the straight path. He has seen the floods of evil mount up and the threaten souls. He has seen the idolatry of matter and the worship of human reason replace in the mind of man, faith in the Being Who created him, knowledge of his own nothingness, and hope in his immortal destiny. He has seen cold egoism and sordid motives, like a malignant canker, eat away the heart of man, that was created for boundless love and the openheartedness of self-sacrifice. He has seen scepticism, the negation of all supernatural action, thirst for gold and debasing impurity act like powerful solvents on human societies and, breaking all bonds, rend asunder and destroy the family, social fraternity, and the homogeneity of nations.

“He has seen the world totter on its foundations, and, seized with immense pity for this humanity redeemed by His Blood, for this ungrateful humanity which is turning away from Him, He bent down towards His priests and said to them: ‘Come to Me my faithful ones, my beloved, come and help Me to re-conquer lost souls. Behold! I send you again to teach the nations; bring them salvation by the truth of your words and by the light of your example.

“And as you will have to wage war and must needs suffer; as you will labour for My glory and as you will give Me souls, I wish to give you a gift, precious among all gifts: I give you My Heart! I give It to you as a sword and buckler in your combats; as a guide and a light in your ways; as a consoler in your troubles. Draw without fear from the treasures of love which It contains. Draw first for yourselves; enrich yourselves from Its plenitude; fill your hearts from it until they overflow. Then draw for the others; pour My love into souls; carry everywhere this divine fire which is to purify and renew the earth.

“And Jesus, making His priests repose on His divine Breast gave them His adorable Heart, the pledge of His incomparable love.”

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