Office of Readings for Thursday 21 June 2007

Today we celebrate the Memorial of St Aloysius Gonzaga. St Aloysius Gonzaga was born on 9 March 1568 in Lombardy. His father wanted him to become a soldier, but he entered the Society of Jesus as a novice when he was eighteen.

He cared for plague victims during the outbreak in 1591. He caught the disease and died on 21 June 1591, in Rome. His relics are entombed under the altar of Saint Ignatius Church in Rome.

St Aloysius is the patron saint for teenagers and youth. Let us imitate his devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary and be innocent like him.

The below letter is in today’s Office of Readings. It was written by the Saint before he shortly before he died.

A letter from St Aloysius Gonzaga to his mother
God’s mercies shall be my song for ever

May the comfort and grace of the Holy Spirit be yours for ever, most honoured lady. Your letter found me lingering still in this region of the dead, but now I must rouse myself to make my way on to heaven at last and to praise God for ever in the land of the living; indeed I had hoped that before this time my journey there would have been over. If charity, as Saint Paul says, means to weep with those who weep and rejoice with those who are glad, then, dearest mother, you shall rejoice exceedingly that God in his grace and his love for you is showing me the path to true happiness, and assuring me that I shall never lose him.

The divine goodness, most honoured lady, is a fathomless and shoreless ocean, and I confess that when I plunge my mind into thought of this it is carried away by the immensity and feels quite lost and bewildered there. In return for my short and feeble labours, God is calling me to eternal rest; his voice from heaven invites me to the infinite bliss I have sought so languidly, and promises me this reward for the tears I have so seldom shed.

Take care above all things, most honoured lady, not to insult God’s boundless loving kindness; you would certainly do this if you mourned as dead one living face to face with God, one whose prayers can bring you in your troubles more powerful aid than they ever could on earth. And our parting will not be for long; we shall see each other again in heaven; we shall be united with our Saviour; there we shall praise him with heart and soul, sing of his mercies for ever, and enjoy eternal happiness. When he takes away what he once lent us, his purpose is to store our treasure elsewhere more safely and bestow on us those very blessings that we ourselves would most choose to have.

I write all this with the one desire that you and all my family may consider my departure a joy and favour and that you especially may speed with a mother’s blessing my passage across the waters till I reach the shore to which all hopes belong. I write the more willingly because I have no clearer way of expressing the love and respect I owe you as your son.

O God, the distributer of heavenly gifts, Who in the angelic youth Aloysius didst unite a wonderful innocence of life with an equally wonderful penance, grant, through his merits and prayers, that we, who have not followed him in innocence, may imitate him in penance. Through Christ our Lord, Amen.

2 Responses to “Office of Readings for Thursday 21 June 2007”

  1. 1 Andrew June 21, 2007 at 4:15 pm

    I’m sure St Aloysius would be quite sad with the current state of the Jesuits, especially regarding the zeal for missionary work and conversion versus their preoccupation with social justice issues.

    Are you familiar with the Jesuits in Singapore? I believe Fr. Phillip Heng is the current Novice Master at Kingsmead Hall.

  2. 2 Ian Finian June 21, 2007 at 11:15 pm

    I attended Mass last Sunday at St Ignatius Church, which is run by the Jesuits. I have plenty to gripe about. Maybe in my later post.

    Not really familiar with them, I don’t live in the Western side of Singapore. I live in the North East. The Jesuits are too far away from me. So is Opus Dei.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us

Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us

Stella Matutina, ora pro nobis

Our Lady of Perpetual Succor, pray for us

St Michael the Archangel, pray for us

St Jude, pray for us

St Benedict, pray for us

St Dominic, pray for us

St Anthony, pray for us

%d bloggers like this: