Questo articolo è disponibile anche in: Italian English Spanish

Question

Dear Father,

this morning “by chance” I found myself on this website, … especially in the sexual morality section. I had time to read most of the questions and answers on the various subjects related to this part of human life.

I was very amazed at the clarity – sometimes uncomfortable, but the truth is not always something comfortable or pleasant – you use in your answers, which are faithful to the magisterium of the Church, written in the Word of God, confirmed by the saints’ lives and experiences, and by poor sinners like us who by God’s mercy were able to experience the beauty of life in the spirit and to joyfully witness it.

I was struck by how the teaching of the Church is a “servant” of man , at his service to make the life of every man true and free.

It is true, certain things precisely in sexual matters may seem a set of privations (for example the acts of masturbation, pornography, the practice of homosexuality, contraception, etc., etc.), but when interpreted and lived in the light of the Church, of the word of God and of prayer one will truly feel that the privation is to be slave to unhealthy fleshly passions, not to live in the life of the spirit.

I only allow myself to say with profound humility that chastity, lived in different contexts, such as young people, marriage, consecrated persons, celibates who are not married, homosexuals, all the Christians, is a gift from the Lord.

We could never be so good as to live chastely without Him helping us through the Holy Spirit.

The perfect guardian of chaste life and from every temptation that threatens it is the Virgin Mary.

The rosary must always be with us, let us always carry a small chaplet in the pockets of our trousers or jackets: when we walk a stretch of road, when we have some time let us take the rosary and say even just a decade as long as we can, every day, and this holy virtue of chastity will thus be lived and protected.

Thank you for your apostolate.

Alessio


Answer of the priest

Dear Alessio,

1. I’m glad that other sites like the one you mentioned to me are reporting the answers posted here on our Amicidomenicani site.

What we read in Sacred Scripture can also be applied to our small service: “A report goes forth through all the earth, their messages, to the ends of the world” (Ps 19: 5).

These words (In omnem terram exivit sonus eorum: et in fines orbis terrae verba eorum) are applied by the liturgy of the Church to the Apostles.

2. This Psalm goes on and says with a very beautiful Latin expression “Lex Domini immaculata, convertens animas” (Ps 19: 8), which translated into English reads “The law of the Lord is without blemish, it converts souls”.

The translation of the Italian and of other Bishops’ Conferences is correct, even though it says “The law of the Lord is perfect, refreshing the soul”, thus emphasizing how in the observance of the law of God a person is interiorly strengthened  from every point of view: psychological, moral, supernatural, in relationship with others…

3. But the “convertens animas” (converts souls) has its own peculiar strength.

In fact, the law of the Lord is the instruction given by God to men so that they may convert, live and prosper, and may have long life in the land which they are to occupy (cf. Dt 5:33).

4. Saint Augustine, as a true eagle, goes further by saying that the law of the Lord is the Lord himself, also because his indications – including those on purity – have the strength to convert us and transform us into Christ.

Here are his exact words: “The law of the Lord is undefiled, converting souls. Manifestation of Christ. The law of the Lord, therefore, is Himself who came to fulfil the law, not to destroy it; an undefiled law, Who did no sin, neither was guile found in His mouth, not oppressing souls with the yoke of bondage, but converting them to imitate Him in liberty” (Commentary on Psalm 19) .

5. When we let ourselves be enlightened by the Lord and we prefer his ways to our short-sighted views, there is nothing to fear.

The words that the Holy Spirit inspired to David also apply to those who seek to be pure: “The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom should I fear? The LORD is my life’s refuge; of whom should I be afraid?” (Ps 27: 1).

Precisely for this reason, those who live in purity of soul benefit from divine protection and soon see their opponents’ failing: “When evildoers come at me to devour my flesh, these my enemies and foes themselves stumble and fall” (Ps 27.2).

There is no need to wage war on anyone because there is already He who defends us.

6. Returning to Psalm 19, David goes on like this: “The statutes of the LORD are true, all of them just; more desirable than gold, than a hoard of purest gold, sweeter also than honey or drippings from the comb. By them your servant is warned; obeying them brings much reward” (Ps 19: 10-12).

Whoever walks in the ways of the Lord experiences his faithfulness and his benevolence.

It is understood that purity is more precious and more desirable than gold, than a hoard of purest gold.

And that it is sweeter and more pleasant than all sensitive sweetness (sweeter than honey or drippings from the comb) because there is nothing so sweet and pleasant as heart-to-heart communion with God.

7. At the same time, those who are pure are illuminated by the very light of God.

This interior light not infrequently manifests itself in the clarity of gaze and face.

Don Orione said that Pius IX enchanted with his gaze and many converted at the mere sight of him. And looking for the reason he said that it was to be found in his purity!

8. But another very beautiful reality is promised to those who are pure: a great reward is reserved for them.

David says this for those who put into practice the precepts of the Lord and evidently among these there is also that relating to purity: “Obeying them brings much reward ” (Ps 19:12).

Solomon attests it: “Yet all good things together came to me in her company, and countless riches at her hands” (Wis 7:11).

Thank you for your precious testimony which has provided me with the opportunity to speak of the extraordinary richness that purity of soul brings to the fortunate person who lives according to God’s ways.

I gladly remind you to the Lord and I bless you.

Father Angelo


Translated by Chiara P.

Reviewed by David