Mystical City of God - Virgin Mary

By Sor Maria of Agreda


  INDEX   Book 1  Chapter  19    Verses:  283-311

283. The text of the third and last part of chapter twenty-first of the Apocalypse which I saw explained is as follows:
19. “And the foundations and the wall were adorned by all manner of precious stones. The first foundation was jasper; the second, sapphire; the third, chalcedony; the fourth, an emerald;
20. The fifth, sardony, the sixth, sardius; the seventh, chrysolite ; the eighth, beryl ; the ninth, topaz ; the tenth, chrysoprasus ; the eleventh, hyacinth; the twelfth, amethyst.
21. And the twelve gates are twelve pearls, one to each; and every special gate was of one several pearl; and the street of the city was of pure gold, as it were transparent glass.
22. And I saw no temple therein. For the Lord
God Almighty is the temple thereof, and the Lamb.
23. And the city hath no need of the sun, nor of the moon, to shine in it; for the glory of God hath enlightened it, and the Lamb is the lamp thereof.
24. And the nations shall walk in the light of it; and the kings of the earth shall bring their glory and honor into it.
25. And the gates thereof shall not be shut by day ; for there shall be no night there.
26. And they shall bring the glory and honor of the nations into it.
27. There shall not enter into it anything defiled, or that worketh abomination or maketh a lie, but they that are written in the book of life of the lamb.” So far the text and letter of the twenty-first chapter of the Apocalypse, which I saw explained.
284. The Almighty having chosen the holy city of Mary for his habitation, and She being of all things out side of God the most fit and appropriate, it was not improper that, from the treasures of his Divinity and from: the merits of his most holy Son, He should adorn the foundations of this city s wall with all manner of precious stones. The fortitude and strength of Mary, typified by the walls, the beauty and excellence of her sanctity and graces, symbolized by the precious stones, her wonderful Conception, suggested by the foundations, were all well proportioned by God in regard to each other and in regard to the exalted end, for which this City was founded, namely, that God should live within it by his love and that from the virginal womb of Mary He might accept his human nature. All this the Evangelist describes just as he sees it in the most holy Mary. For on account of the dignity, sanctity and stability which were required in Her as a dwelling-place and as a stronghold of God, it was befitting that the foundation walls of this City, which prefigure the beginnings of her Immaculate Conception, should be built of such eminently precious stones or virtues that none more rich or precious could ever be found.
285. “The first foundation,” or stone, he says, “was jasper,” whose variegated tints and durability indicate the constancy and fortitude, which from the moment of her Conception was infused into this great Lady in order that during the course of her life She might continue to exercise all the virtues with invincible magnanimity and constancy. The virtues and habits, conceded and infused into the most holy Mary at her Conception and typified by these precious stones, at the same time are connected with special privileges, and I will as far as possible, explain them, in order that the full mystery of these twelve foundations may become known. This gift of strength included a special superiority and sovereignty for repressing, subduing and vanquishing the ancient serpent, and for inspiring all the demons with an inexpressible terror. On that account they fly from Her and fear Her from afar, being filled with trembling at her mere presence. They cannot come near the most holy Mary without excruciating pain. So liberal was divine Providence with her Majesty that She was not only exempt from the common laws of the children of Adam, but also freed from original guilt as well as from subjection to the demon contracted thereby. Setting Her apart from these evils, He at the same time endowed Her with sovereign power over the devil, which all men have lost together with their innocence. More than that: as Mother of the Son of the eternal Father (whom She bore in her womb for the very purpose of putting an end to the evil power of the enemies) She was invested with actual authority which emanated from God him self and in virtue of which this most exalted Mistress subdued the demons and sent them repeatedly to the infernal dungeons, as I will relate farther on.
286. “The second, sapphire.” This stone imitates the color of the clear and serene firmament and shows a scattering of gold spots or atoms. Its color typifies the serenity and tranquillity of the gifts and graces of the most holy Mary, enabling Her to enjoy an unchanging, heavenly and serene peace, free from any cloud of disorder and illumined from the moment of her Conception with visions of the Divinity. By the likeness of her virtues to the divine attributes and by her participation in them, especially in their unchangeableness, She made Herself worthy to see God. Many times during her pilgrimage through life was She favored with unveiled and clear vision of God, as will be described. In virtue of this singular privilege the Almighty endowed Her with the power of communicating tranquillity and peace of spirit to those, who will ask for her intercession. There fore let all the faithful, who are agitated and stirred up by the tormenting anxiety of their vices, pray to Her, that so they may obtain from Her this gift of peace.
287. “The third, a chalcedony.” This stone takes its name from the country where it is found. It is of the color of the ruby and in the night resplendent as a beacon-light. The hidden signification of this stone points to the holiness and power of the name of Mary. For She took her name from that part of the world, where She first came into being, calling herself a daughter of Adam, and her name, by the mere change of the accent signifies in Latin the collective oceans, for She was the ocean of the graces and gifts of the Divinity. She came into the world in her Immaculate Conception, submerging and inundating it with these gifts, sweeping off the malice of sin and its effects, illuminating the darkness of the abyss with the light of her spirit and the brightness of her heavenly wisdom. This foundation-stone signifies that the Most High conceded to her most holy name the power to disperse the clouds of infidelity spread over the earth, and to destroy the errors of heresy, of paganism, idolatry and all uncertainty in matters of the Catholic faith. If the infidels would turn toward this light by invoking Mary s name, it is certain that their under standing would quickly expel the darkness, their errors would be drowned as in a sea in virtue of the power con ceded to Her from on high.
288. “The fourth, an emerald,” the color of which is a pleasant green, delighting the sight without fatigue. It mysteriously typifies the graces of the most holy Mary in her Conception for, being most amiable and gracious in the eyes of God and his creatures. She preserved in Herself, without the least offense against his name and memory, all the verdure and strength of the holiness, virtues and gifts then conferred upon Her. According ly the Most High granted Her the privilege of insuring a like stability to her devout followers, obtaining for them perseverance and fidelity in the friendship of God and in the practice of virtue.
289. “The fifth, sardonyx.” This stone is transparent, though favoring the flesh-color and usually containing three different tints : dark below, whitish in the centre, and nacreous or like mother-of-pearl above, a most graceful variety of color. The mysterious signification of this stone pointed to the close relation between the Mother and the Son, whom She was to bring forth. The dark color points to the inferior and terrestrial portion of the body of Mary, obscured by mortification and labors during her stay on earth, and also to the humanity of her Son, obscured by taking upon Himself our guilt. The white typifies the purity of the soul of Mary, the Virgin, and of Christ, our highest good. The carnation bespeaks in Him the hypostatical union of his humanity and Divinity, and in Mary her participation in the love of her most holy Son, and her communication in all the splendors of the Divinity. In virtue of this foundation stone the great Queen of heaven enjoys the power of interceding and obtaining for her clients the efficacious application of the superabundant merits of the Incarnation and Redemption, including also a special devotion toward the mysteries and the life of Christ our Lord through his merits.
290. “The sixth, sardius.” This stone is transparent, and because it at the same time flashes like the clear flame of a fire, it is the symbol of the flame of divine love, which incessantly burns in the Queen of heaven, for there is no cessation nor diminution of that conflagration of love in her bosom. From the very moment of her Conception, which was the time and place of its be ginning, it continued to grow, and now, having reached that highest state of exaltation, which ever can fall to the lot of a creature, it burns and shall burn still brighter through all the eternities. This includes her privilege of distributing the influence, the love and the gifts of the Holy Ghost to those who ask in her name.
291. “The seventh, chrysolite.” This stone resembles in its color gold refulgent with flaming fire; and this latter is more apt to show itself by night than by day. It symbolized the ardent love which Mary entertains for the Church militant, its ministers, and for the law of grace in particular. This love shone forth more especially during the night of the Death of her most holy Son, also during the time, when in the beginnings of the evangelical law, She held the office of teacher and when She prayed so ardently for the establishment of the Church and its Sacraments. In those times, as will be said in its place, She cooperated by her most burning love toward the salvation of the whole human race. She alone knew and appreciated the value of the most holy law of her Son. With this love She was prepared and endowed from the moment of her Conception in order to be the Co-adjutrix of Christ our Lord. This includes the prerogative of being able to obtain for those that invoke Her, the grace of a good disposition toward the fruitful reception of the Sacraments of the holy Church and of clearing away obstacles that prevent their full effects.
292. “The eighth, beryl.” This stone is of a green and yellow color; but the green predominates, having a great resemblance to olive and being of resplendent brilliancy. It represents the singular faith and hope given to Mary in her Conception, enabling Her to understand and execute arduous and sublime works, such as She in reality accomplished for the glory of Her Creator. In virtue of this gift of unfailing assistance of the Lord, was conferred upon Her the power to endow her servants with fortitude and patience in the tribulations and difficulties of their undertakings.
293. “The ninth, topaz.” This stone is transparent and of a mulberry color, much prized and esteemed. It represents the most honorable virginity of Mary, our Mistress, and her mothership in regard to the incarnate Word; moreover during her whole life these two prerogatives were held by Her as of inestimable value and worthy of the most humble thanks. At the instant of her Conception She asked the Most High for the virtue of chastity and She promised the observance of it during the rest of her earthly life. She was aware that it was conceded to Her in a degree far above her vows and desires. Not only that, but She knew that the Lord had made Her the Teacher and the Guide of all the virgins and lovers of chastity, and that through her intercession, She could obtain these virtues and perseverance in them for all her devotees. 294 “The tenth, chrysoprase,” the color of which is green with touches of gold. It signified the most firm hope planted in the heart of the most holy Mary at her Conception, and the love with which it was impregnated and embellished. Hope lived inextinguishably in the bosom of our Queen, as was befitting for Her who was to communicate similar quality to the rest of man kind. The firmness of her confidence was founded in the stability of her high and generous nature during all the labors and exercises of her most holy life, and especially in the Passion and Death of her most holy Son. At the same time with this virtue the power of efficacious mediation was given Her, so that She might obtain the same firmness of hope for her clients.
295. “The eleventh, hyacinth,” which is of an exquisite violet color. In this foundation-stone is disclosed the love of Mary for the Redemption of the human race. This love was infused into Her at her Conception and was applied to Her in view of the merits of the death of the Redeemer, her Son. As the whole remedy of guilt and the justification of all the souls was to take its rise from the Redemption, this love of the great Queen for the Redemption from that first instant, earned Her the power of demanding that no sinner, how great and abominable soever he might be, should be excluded from the fruit of the Redemption and justification, nor fail to attain eternal life if he invoked the intercession of this powerful Lady and Advocate.
296. “The twelfth, amethyst,” of a refulgent violet color. The mystery of this stone or foundation corresponds in part with that of the first. It imports a kind of inherent power conceded to the most holy Mary from the moment of her Conception against all the devilish host, so that the demons, without any command or action on her part, feel a distressing and torturing force proceeding from Her, as soon as they wish to approach her presence. It was given to Her as a reward of her incomparable zeal in exalting and defending the glory and honor of God. Hence the mere sound of her sweetest name is sufficient to expel from the bodies of men the malignant spirits. For her holy name is so powerful that at the mere intimation of it, they are overcome and deprived of strength. These are in short the mysteries of the foundations upon which God built the holy City of Mary. But they point to many other mysteries and favors received by Her, and in so far as the Lord will give me light and strength, I will manifest them in the farther course of this history.
297. The Evangelist proceeds and says: “And the twelve gates are twelve pearls, one to each; and every several gate was of one several pearl.” The great number of gates of this mystical City signify that through most holy Mary and through her ineffable dignity and merits, the entrance to life everlasting was to be just as easy as it is free. It was in a manner due and befitting to the excellence of this exalted Queen, that in Her and through Her the infinite mercy of the Most High should magnify itself by opening all the many ways of communication with the Divinity, and that all mortals, if they wished to make use of her merits and powerful intercession, should enter into participation of the Divinity. The priceless value, magnificence, beauty and fairness of these twelve gates, constructed of pearls, imply the greatness of the dignity and grace of this Empress of heaven, and the sweetness of her delightful name, which draws mortals toward God. The most holy Mary knew that the Lord had bestowed upon Her the prerogative of being the special Mediatrix of the human race and the Dispensatrix of the treasures of the Divinity for her Son; and therefore the prudent and most diligent Mistress exerted Herself to make the merits and dignity of her works so precious and excellent that they are the astonishment of the blessed in heaven. Thus the gates of that city were indeed precious pearls in the sight of the Lord and of men.
298. Accordingly it is said: “And the square of the city was of pure gold, as it were transparent glass.” The piazza or square of that City of God, most holy Mary, is its interior or her soul. Here, as in a square or marketplace, all the life converges and here the commerce and trade of the republic of the soul is transacted; for it is the centre of the activity of the senses and other faculties. This square in the most holy Mary was of purest and transparent gold, because composed of the wisdom and love of God himself. Never was it affected by dullness, ignorance or inattention; all her thoughts were most exalted and her affections were inflamed with immeasurable love. On this square the highest mysteries of the Divinity were deliberated, from this square were heard the words “Fiat mihi secundum verbum tuum,” which gave a beginning to the most exalted work that God ever accomplished or will ever accomplish; there the innumerable petitions in favor of the human race were devised and sent up to the tribunal of God; there those riches were amassed, which will expel poverty from all the world, if men will enter into commerce with it ; there also is the armory against the demons and all vice. For in most holy Mary are the graces and virtues, which make Her terrible to hell and which afford us courage to overcome the devilish host.
299. He says farther: “And I saw no temple therein. For the Lord God Almighty is the temple thereof, and the Lamb.” The temples of the cities serve as places of prayer and worship to be rendered to God ; and it would be a great defect, if in the City of God there were no temple befitting its greatness and excellence. Hence in this City of holy Mary is so sacred a temple that the omnipotent God himself and the Lamb itself, that is: the humanity and the Divinity of his Only-begotten Son, are reverenced and adored in spirit, and more worthily than in all the temples of the world; for He dwelt in Her as in his proper habitation. He was also Himself the temple of Mary, since She was encompassed, surrounded and enclosed by the Divinity and the humanity, both of which served Her as a habitation and a tabernacle. For being in God, she never ceased to adore, worship and petition this same God and incarnate Word within her womb thus in spirit living in God and in the Lamb as in a temple since her continual sanctity was be fitting to such a temple. In order to think worthily of this heavenly Mistress, we must always consider Her as enclosed in the Divinity and in her most holy Son as in a temple. Thus shall we understand what acts and processes of love, adoration and reverence, were accomplished by Her; what delights She experienced in the same Lord, what petitions arose in Her for the human race, and how earnestly, from her inmost heart and with burning charity, She cried and begged for the salvation of mortals, when in spirit She saw the great necessity of their salvation.
300. Further says the Evangelist: “And the city hath no need of the sun and the moon, to shine in it; for the glory of God hath enlightened it, and the Lamb is the lamp thereof.” The sun and the moon, are not necessary in the presence of greater light than their own ; and thus, in the empyrean heaven, where the infinite Suns give their light, the absence of our sun is no defect, though it is so resplendent and beautiful In the most holy Mary, our Queen, there was no need of created sun or moon to enlighten and direct Her; for without comparison She pleased and delighted God. Nor could the wisdom, sanctity and perfection of her works have any other teacher and director, than the Sun of justice itself, her most holy Son. All other creatures were far too deficient to assist Her in being a worthy Mother of her Creator. Nevertheless in this same school of the Lord She learned to be the most humble and obedient among the humble and obedient. Though She was taught by God himself, yet She hesitated not to supplicate and obey the most abject among men in those things in which it was not unbecoming. Being the disciple of Him, who corrects the wise, She drew the divine philosophy of humility from Him, her great Master. And She rose to such wisdom, that the Evangelist could say :
301. “And the nations shall walk in the light of it:” for if Christ our Lord, calls the doctors and saints burning lights, placed upon the candlestick to enlighten the Church: lights such as were scattered through the ages in the Patriarchs and Prophets, Apostles, Martyrs and Doctors, filling the Catholic Church with such effulgence, that it appears to be a heaven with many suns and moons: what shall we say of the most holy Mary, whose light and splendor incomparably exceeds all the doctors and teachers of the Church, yea that of the angels of heaven? If only the mortals were possessed of clear sight to see the splendor of the light of the most holy Mary, it alone would suffice to enlighten every man in the world and to illumine for them the paths of heaven. Therefore, because all those who have attained to the knowledge of God, walked in the light of this holy City, St. John says: “that the nations have walked in the light of it.” Moreover he adds most truly:
302. “And the kings of the earth shall bring their glory and their honor into it.” Very blessed are those kings and princes, who with happy zeal use their power and influence to fulfill this prophecy. All of them should do so; but fortunate are they, that turn with sincere affection to most holy Mary, employing their life, their honor, their riches, and their high position in the defense of that City of God, extending her glory in the world and magnifying her name in the Catholic Church in opposition to the crackbrained madness of heretics and infidels. With the deepest sorrow I be hold Catholic princes, who are remiss in seeking the favor of this Queen, fail to ask her assistance in the great dangers of their states, and do not look upon Her as a refuge and protection, as an Intercessor and Advocate. If the dangers of kings and potentates are great, let them remember, that their obligation to be thankful is not any less; for this heavenly Queen her self says, that through Her kings do reign, princes command, and the powerful administer justice (Prov. 8, 16) ; She loves those that love Her (Eccli. 14, 31) and those, that magnify Her, attain eternal life, since those, that work with Her do not sin.
303. I do not wish to conceal the light, which many times and especially on this occasion, has been vouchsafed to me in order to be made known to others. In the Lord it was shown me, that all the afflictions of the Catholic Church and all the labors of the Christian people, have been invariably mitigated by the intercession of the most holy Mary; that in the turbulence of the present times, when heretical pride surges up so high against God and his lamentably afflicted Church, only one remedy is left for these miseries, namely: That the Catholic kings and governments turn to the Mother of grace and mercy, most holy Mary. Let them seek her favor by rendering Her especial homage, so that the devotion and honor of Mary may grow and spread over the whole earth and thus draw Her toward us with a look of pity. Then it may be, that She will obtain for us the grace of her most holy Son, that all the un bridled vices now infecting the Christian people through malice of the enemy, will be reformed, and through her intercession the wrath of the Lord, which so justly chastises us and threatens us with yet greater calamities and misfortunes, will be appeased. From this reformation and amendment of our sins would also spring victory against the infidels and the extirpation of the false sects, that oppress the holy Church. For the most holy Mary is the sword, which is to destroy and cut them down all over the world.
304. Even now the world suffers the losses consequent upon this forgetfulness. If the Catholic kings are not successful in the government of their countries, in the preservation and the spread of the Catholic faith, in overcoming their enemies, or in the warfares and battles against the infidels, all this happens, because they do not follow this guiding Star, which shows them the way; be cause they have not placed Mary as the beginning and immediate end of their works and projects and because they forget that this Queen treads in the paths of justice in order to teach it, exalts and enriches those that love it (Prov. 8, 20).
305. O thou prince and head of the holy Catholic
Church! O ye prelates, who are also called princes of the Church! And thou, Catholic prince and monarch of Spain, to whom, according to my natural obligation and through the great love and special providence of the Most High, I direct this humble and earnest appeal! Cast thy crown, thy monarchy at the feet of this Queen and Mistress of heaven and earth ; seek out this Restoratrix of all the human race ; listen to Her, who by power divine is placed over all the hosts of men and of all the infernal regions ; turn thy affection toward Her, who holds in her hands the keys of the good will and treasures of the Most High ; transport thy honor and renown of that City of God, who has no need thereof in order to increase hers, but who can improve and exalt thy own! Offer to Her with Catholic enthusiasm and with a whole heart some great and pleasing service, and the recompense will be immeasurably great : the conversion of the heathens, the victory over heresies and paganism, the peace of the Church, new light and help to improve the lives of men and a great and glorious reign for thee in this life and the next.
306. O my fatherland, kingdom of Spain, which on account of thy Catholic faith, art most fortunate ! Even more fortunate shalt thou be if to the steadfastness and sincerity of thy faith, given to thee by the Almighty, thou wilt add the holy fear of God corresponding to thy distinguished faith! Would that in order to arrive at this summit of thy happiness, all thy inhabitants unite in a burning devotion to the most holy Mary! How greatly would thy glory then shine forth! How much wouldst thou be enlightened! How valiantly wouldst thou then be protected and defended by this Queen, and how would thy Catholic kings be enriched by treasures from on high, and through their agency, how widely would the sweet law of the Gospel spread among the nations! Remember that this great Princess honors those that honor Her, enriches those that seek Her, makes illustrious those that praise Her, and defends those that hope in Her. Be assured, that in order thus to show Herself a Mother and shower her mercies upon thee, She hopes and desires to be approached and solicited. At the same time remember, that God is under no necessity to any one (Ps. 15, 2) and that He can make out of stones, children of Abraham (Luc. 3, 8) ; if thou make thyself unworthy of such great good, He can re serve this glory for those that serve Him better and make themselves less unworthy of the reward.
307. And in order that thou mayest not remain ignorant of the service, which in our days (among many others taught thee by the devotion and piety), should be rendered to this great Queen and Mistress of men, consider the present position, which the mystery of her Immaculate Conception holds in the Catholic Church and direct thy attention to supply what is still missing to establish firmly this fundamental doctrine of that City of God. Let no one despise this suggestion as coming from a weak and ignorant woman, or as a notion founded in a prejudiced love of a state and profession consecrated to the name and honor of Mary immaculate ; for the conviction and light, which I have received in the knowledge of her life, is sufficient for me. Not for my own honor, nor relying upon my own judgment and authority, do I make this exhortation: I obey the command of the Lord, who gives speech to the mute, and makes eloquent the tongues of infants. Let those that admire this merciful liberality, also take notice of what the Evangelist adds, saying:
308. “And the gates thereof shall not be shut by day : for there shall be no night there.” The portals of mercy of most holy Mary never were and never are closed, nor was there in Her from the first instant of her Conception, any darkness of guilt, which might close the gates of this City, as it happened in the rest of the saints. Just as in those places, where gates are always open, all those that wish, can issue forth or enter at all times, so no prohibition hinders mortals from entering freely to the Divinity through the gates of the mercy of the most pure Mary. For in that City is the storehouse of the treasures of heaven, open to all without limitation of time, place, age or sex. All were free to enter ever since its foundation; for that very purpose the Most High has opened so many portals in this foundation, leaving them unlocked, free and open to the light, so that from the first moment of Mary s purest Conception mercies and benefits began to descend upon the whole human race. But though this City has so many gates, from which issue the riches of the Divinity, yet it is on that account not the less secure from its enemies. There fore the text proceeds:
309. “There shall not enter into it anything defiled, or that worketh abomination or maketh a lie, but they that are written in the book of life of the Lamb,” etc. Rehearsing again the glories of the City of God, the Evangelist closes this twenty-first chapter, assuring us once more, that there was no blemish in Her, because She received an immaculate body and soul. This, how ever, never could be said of Her, if She was tainted by original guilt ; and much less have stains or blemishes of actual sins ever found entrance in Her. That which entered into this City of God is entirely similar to that which is written of the Lamb: her most holy Son was taken as the pattern and model for her formation and from no other being could any excellence of the most holy Mary be copied, even when there is question of the smallest, if indeed anything can be called small in Her. Since this portal, Mary, was to be the portal of a city of refuge for the mortals, it could only be with the understanding, that he, who is the perpetrator of abomination and lies, should never find part or entrance through it. But let not on this account the sinful and guilty sons of Adam hesitate to approach the gates of this holy City of God; for if they approach with contrition and humility to seek the cleansing of grace, they will find it in these gates of the great Queen, and in no others. She is clean, pure, abounding in grace, and above all She is the Mother of mercy ; She is sweet, loving and powerful to enrich our poverty and to cleanse us from the stains of all our sins.

Instruction which the Queen of Heaven gave me concerning these Chapters
310. My daughter, these chapters contain excellent direction and light, though thou hast left in them many things unsaid. Seek therefore to draw profit from all that thou hast understood and written, bewaring lest thou receive the light of grace in vain. This in brief I wish thee to remember; be not dismayed, that thou wert conceived in sin, and, as an earthly creature, feelest within thyself the earthly inclinations ; but strive against thy passions to a finish. In doing this thou wilt at the same time battle against thy enemies. With the help of the Almighty s grace, thou canst rise above thyself and make thyself a daughter of heaven, whence all grace comes. In order that thou mayest attain thereto, let thy habitation continue to be in the higher regions, keeping thy mind fixed in the knowledge of the immutable Being and perfections of God and never allowing thy attention to be drawn away to another even otherwise necessary object. With this continual presence and memory of God s greatness thou wilt dispose thyself for the influx of the holy Spirit and his gifts in closest friendship and communication with the Lord. In order to evade all hindrance to this his holy Will, which I have already many times pointed out and made manifest to thee, seek to mortify the inferior part of thy being, the seat of the evil inclinations and passions. Die to all that is earthly, sacrifice, in the consciousness of God s presence, all thy sensitive appetities, fulfill none of their impulses, nor ever satisfy thy own will outside of the narrow limits of obedience. Do not leave the secret refuge of interior recollection, where the Lamb en lightens thee. Adorn thyself for entrance into the bridal chamber of thy Spouse, and permit the hand of the Al mighty to array thee in such a manner as He wishes, al ways seeking to concur with Him and place no obstacle in his way. Purify thy soul by many acts of sorrow for having offended Him, magnify and praise Him with a most ardent love. Seek Him, and rest not until thou hast found Him, whom thy soul desires, hold Him and do not let Him go (Cant. 3, 4). I wish thee to proceed on thy pilgrimage like one, who has already arrived at the journey s end, keeping thy gaze continually on the source of all glory. Let the rule of thy life be to walk in the light of faith and in the brightness, with which the Omnipotent shall fill and illumine thy soul, and to continue to love, adore and reverence Him, without any cessation or diminution. This being the will of the Almighty in thy regard : consider what shall be thy gain, but remember also, what may be thy loss. See thou do not run this risk; subject thyself with thy whole will and being to the guidance of thy Spouse, of myself, and of holy obedience, which must always be thy standard. Thus the Mother of the Lord instructed me, and I answered Her, filled with great confusion:
311. “Queen and Mistress of all creation, whose servant I am and wish to be for all the eternities ! Forever will I praise the Omnipotence of the Most High, be cause He chose thus to exalt Thee. But since Thou art so fortunate and so powerful with the Almighty, I con jure Thee, O my Lady, to look with an eye of mercy upon me, thy poor and miserable servant. Make me partaker in the gifts which the Lord has placed in thy hands for distribution among the needy, raise me up from my abject state, enrich my nakedness and poverty, and as a Mistress compel me to desire and do what is most perfect, helping me to find grace in the eyes of thy most holy Son and my Lord. In thy hands do I place my salvation, O Mistress and Queen! do Thou take charge of it to the end ; for thy desires are holy and powerful on account of the merits of thy most holy Son and on account of the promises of the most holy Trinity, which are pledges for the fulfillment of all thy petitions and desires without fail. I myself have nothing to oblige Thee, as I am unworthy, but as a substitute I offer Thee, my Lady, thy own sanctity and clemency.”
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