Advice from St. John Vianney

From the catechetical instruction of St. John Vianney:

My little children, your hearts are small, but prayer stretches them and makes them capable of loving God.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. FrCharles says:

    This part struck me as well as I prayed the Office of Readings this morning. The human heart as a capax dei by grace.

  2. irishgirl says:

    Wise advice from a priest who is a Saint!

    Happy feastday, Father Z [yes, I know I’ve said this already in other posts]!

    I’m listening to my CD of ‘The Priests’ in honor of this day….

  3. Gabriella says:

    If we but only offer our hearts to God, we’d be surprised how much love it is able to hold!

    Your words (or quotes), Fr. Z., are always good for meditation :)
    Thank you.

  4. Jon says:

    A Blessed Feast of the Cure to you of course, Father.

    Which brings me to a conundrum that’s occurred to me.

    As you know, in honor of the Year of Priests, the faithful can gain a plenary indulgence today if they hear Mass, offer prayers to Our Lord on the behalf of priests, and meet the usual obligations of confession, Communion, and are unattached to sin.

    Today’s the Feast of St. John Vianney in the Ordinary Form. It’s the Feast of St. Dominic in the Extraordinary Form. I typically attend the Extraordinary Form. You know where I’m going with this…Can I also gain the indulgence this coming Saturday, the Feast of St. John Vianney in the Extraordinary Form?

    Reconciling those calendars would sure make life a lot more simple!

  5. Rachel says:

    I read that St. Jean Vianney’s teaching was deceptively brilliant– that proud intellectuals, turned off by his simplicity, failed to notice how deeply theological he was.

  6. Rachel says:

    Jon’s comment reminds me of how bemused I was to see that they simply swapped St. Dominic and St. Jean Vianney in the calendars– they used to be August 4 and August 8, and now they’re August 8 and August 4. Why the heck did they need to do that? Just because they could? Whoever “they” are, I’d like to mess with the dates of their own birthdays and anniversaries. I’d only move them a few days this way or that. Who could complain? :)

  7. Greg Smisek says:

    To Jon’s question:
    The decree of the Apostolic Penitentiary specifies the date on which this plenary indulgence can be gained by all the faithful as follows:

    The Plenary Indulgence is granted to all the faithful … on the day of the 150th anniversary of the pious passing of St John Mary Vianney…

    Thus the indulgence is granted for the date of his death (August 4), not on his feast per se. But the indulgence does not hinge on whether the Mass was celebrated in honor of St. John Vianney or not.

    Also, many have missed that a plenary indulgence can also be gained on every First Thursday during the Year for Priests and that local Ordinaries can set other dates as well. I think this would be a great reason for priests to celebrate the votive Mass of Our Lord Jesus Christ Eternal High Priest (usus antiquior or recentior) on First Thursdays, whenever the calendar permits, during this Holy Year.

  8. Greg Smisek says:

    To Rachel’s question:
    The reason for the swap of St. Dominic’s and St. John Vianney’s feast days is that St. John Vianney died on August 4 and St. Dominic didn’t.

    St. Dominic died on August 6, but since the feast of the Transfiguration of our Lord isn’t about to be bumped from August 6, he was originally assigned to August 4. Several hundred years later St. John Vianney dies on August 4, but since St. Dominic has that date, he gets August 9. But that’s also St. Lawrence’s Vigil, so in the 1960/1962 calendar, St. John Vianney is nudged over to August 8.

    One of the prime directives of the tinkerer-architects of the 1969 calendar was to put the feast day of as many saints as possible on the date of their passing on to Heaven. For some reason, the Dominicans agreed to give up the date of their centuries-old feast (apparently reasoning that if they couldn’t get the dies natalis for their founder, that two days after was as good as two days before). And thus we have the ordinary form calendar.

    BTW The Archdiocese of Bologna kept the old date, August 4, for the feast of St. Dominic, since it was in the convent in Bologna that he died. I had the blessed opportunity to attend the Mass and dinner for his glorious feast there.

  9. Rachel says:

    Thank you for the answer, Greg; that was interesting.

  10. Jon says:

    Thanks, Greg.

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