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Saint Pius X and Reverence Lost


“Far, far from the clergy be the love of novelty” ~ Saint Pius X

During a time in the liturgical year when our calendar is dotted with the Feast Days of many prodigious saints, the church pauses today to recognize a canonized figure of recent vintage in Pope Saint Pius X. Canonized in 1954 by the now Venerable Pope Pius XII, Saint Pius X reigned as Pope from 1903-1914.

As a man whose distaste for the Modernist movement only rivaled, conversely, his love for the Eucharist, Saint Pius X urged tradition in the face of those who fancied themselves “innovators” and “revolutionaries” in matters pertaining to our church. He possessed the wisdom to see them for what they were: compromisers and distorters of the truth. In that way and in many others, he was a visionary of epic proportion.

Pius X reveled in the rich traditions of our church; the Holy Eucharist, the Rosary and Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. He was a staunch champion of daily communion. Of the Rosary he called it “The most beautiful and the most rich in graces of all prayers,” going on to say that “it is the prayer that touches most the Heart of the Mother of God...and if you wish peace to reign in your homes, recite the family Rosary.” He would go so far as to famously proclaim “If there were one million families praying the Rosary every day, the entire world would be saved.” As mentioned, he espoused daily adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, a practice he referred to as the “fountainhead of all devotional works.” Saint Pius X possessed a reverence that was rare for his time and virtually unheard of today.

In his book “Learning the Virtues That Lead You to God,” author Father Romano Guardini explains that “Reverence is a surmise of greatness and holiness and a desire to participate in it, combined with the apprehension of being unworthy of it.” In reverence, “man refrains from doing what he usually likes to do, which is to take possession of and use something for his own purposes. Instead he steps back and keeps his distance. This creates a spiritual space in which that which deserves reverence can stand erect, detached, and free, in all its splendor.”

Any society that loses reverence for God will certainly and shortly thereafter lose respect for nature and persons. How can it be any other way? So how do we as a society regain reverence lost?

Scripture tells us that being reverent in our actions far outweighs reverence of a merely symbolic or gestural nature. “Just so, your light must shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father” (Matthew 5:16).

“Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our dwelling with him” (John 14:23). Like all noble virtues, reverence cannot exist without self-sacrificing love. We in essence proclaim our reverence and love for God by way of obedience to his most holy and divine will, which manifests itself in our day to day works. Saint Therese of Lisieux spoke of this when she said “Miss no single opportunity of making some small sacrifice, here by a smiling look, there by a kindly word; always doing the smallest right and doing it all for love.” That’s reverence, in the truest sense of the word.

“Grant, O Lord, we pray, that in following the teachings of Pope Saint Pius X, we may ever celebrate the divine mysteries of our faith with severe reverence and receive them in a spirit of faith.” ~ Amen

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Saint Pius X, great Pope and courageous leader of the Catholic Church, pray for us.



Patrick44 (author) on August 22, 2019:

I think you have a future...a present actually - as a writer Jeanne.

Jeanne Yursik on August 22, 2019:

Sacrifice requires love … and love requires sacrifice. The two go hand-in-hand. St. Therese of Lisieux understood this. Even the smallest of sacrifices does not go unnoticed by our Creator....and sometimes it's even the smaller, everyday sacrifices performed with love that enrich our lives and cause an increase in our love for others. Reverence indeed.

That is something so many have lost … reverence. Reverence for the dignity of life; for belief in the Eucharist as the Body, Blood, Soul & Divinity of Jesus Christ - true Presence; for Mary the Mother of God and her ability to intercede for us with her Son; for our faithful clergy and Church leaders.

How do we get that reverence back? Through prayer, trusting as we pray that He WILL answer us; through repentance for having strayed, begging His forgiveness; through Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament - spending time alone with Him praying for wisdom to know His will for us; through reception of the Eucharist, fully believing in His Presence in this beautiful Sacrament; through sacrifice & love for others. In the world we live in today, can we do this? If we can - if we would - we could change the world and make things right again morally, spiritually and physically!

St. Pius X, pray for us!

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