The Friends of Father Aloysius

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Religious Profession as a Second Baptism

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By Baptism all sins, mortal as well as venial, are forgiven, and to the recipient is imputed neither the fault nor the penalty (culpa et poena), in such a manner that if he were to die immediately after Baptism he would go directly to Heaven without passing through Purgatory. This takes place in virtue of the Sacrament itself, and by menas of the grace infused by it.

Of itself the efficacy of the religious profession is not so great, and it depends in great part on the dispositions of the subject. but nevertheless it greatly resembles Baptism. As regard the guilt, it disposes one most excellency of the act of profession itself; for if on act of love made with all the intensity of which one is capable suffices for pardoning any sins of which one might be guilty, and on this account Jesus said of Mary Magdalen that many sins were forgiven her because he had loved much, what sins will not be forgiven, even though it be indirectly, by the act of profession, if well-made, which is the most perfect act of love of God man can make? The same must be said and with greater reason of the penalty due to our sins, which are so pardoned by the profession, if it is made with all the due conditions, that God will never call us to account for whatever we might have done before the profession, since it is so similar to martyrdom which also cleanses the soul from all stain. Oh, how grateful you ought to be to God for having deigned to call you to cleanse your should in such a way. What joy for you to think that, if you have been a sinner, you are going to die entirely to all your sins, in order to live only for God. (1 Pet. 2: 24) What confidence you must feel when being received so livingly in His arms, Who promises you to forget all offenses you might have committed against Him in the world. What certainty of going to Heaven immediately after death, since you will not be called to account for any sins committed before your profession. Be encouraged, then, by these considerations, to make this act with the greatest fever, that is, wit the most perfect dispositions possible. To this end make in a very good manner the preparatory retreat, with a good confession, and the words of St. John shall be fulfilled in you: "Sanguis Christi emundat nos ab omni peccato."

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