Listen, Meg, God made the angels to show Him splendor, as He made animals for innocence and plants for their simplicity. But Man He made to serve Him wittily, in the tangle of his mind. If He suffers us to come to such a case that there is no escaping, then we may stand to our tackle as best we can, and, yes, Meg, then we can clamor like champions, if we have the spittle for it. But it’s God’s part, not our own, to bring ourselves to such a pass. Our natural business lies in escaping.
Comfort in tribulation can be secured only on the sure ground of faith holding as true the words of Scripture and the teaching of the Catholic Church. Tribulation is a gift from God; one that he especially gives His special friends.
Almighty God, take from me all vainglorious attitudes, all appetites of my own praise, all envy, covetousness, gluttony, sloth, and lechery, all wrathful affections, all appetite of revenging, all desire or delight of other folks’ harm, all pleasure in provoking any person to wrath and anger, all delight of rebuking or insulting any person in their affliction and calamity.
And give me, good Lord, a humble, lowly, quiet, peaceable, patient, charitable, kind, tender, and merciful mind, with all my works and all my words and all my thoughts to have a taste of your holy blessed Spirit.
Give me, good Lord, a full faith, a firm hope, and a fervent charity; a love for you, good Lord, incomparably above the love of myself; and that I love nothing to your displeasure, but everything for the sake of you.
Give me, good Lord, a longing to be with you, not for the avoiding of the calamities of this wretched world, nor so much for the avoiding of the pains of purgatory, nor of the pains of hell either, nor so much for the attaining the joys of heaven, in respect to my own benefit, but for genuine love for you.
And bear me, good Lord, your love and favor, which my love for you (no matter how great) could not, but for your great goodness, deserve.
And pardon me, good Lord, that I am so bold to ask such great petitions, being such a vile and sinful wretch and so unworthy to attain the lowest. But yet, good Lord, such they be as I am bound to wish, and should be nearer the effectual desire of them if my many sins were not the hindrance. From which, O glorious Trinity, grant of your goodness to wash me with that blessed blood that issued out of your tender body (O sweet Savior Christ) in the diverse torments of your most bitter Passion.
If I am distracted, Holy Communion helps me to become recollected. If opportunities are offered by each day to offend my God, I arm myself anew each day for the combat by the reception of the Eucharist. If I am in special need of light and prudence in order to discharge my burdensome duties, I draw nigh to my Saviour and seek counsel and light from him.
St. Thomas More (1478 – 1535)
St. Thomas More was a lawyer, statesman and friend of King Henry VIII of England. He was once the Lord Chancellor, one of the most important positions in the court. He was a holy and faithful person, and a good husband and father. When King Henry went against the Catholic Church, St. Thomas and many others, including the Bishop St. John Fisher, refused to join the King. As a result, they were executed. St. Thomas More’s feast day is on 22 June.