NO MATTER HOW BEAUTIFUL THE WORDS OF A PREACHER SOUND, THEY ARE EMPTY IF NOT ACCOMPANIED BY INTENSE DAILY PRAYER
In the preaching of parish missions, Eugene had always insisted on the paramount importance of the witness of the lifestyle of the missionaries as the primary means of conversion of the people. A program of regular prayer is the only way to achieve an integrity of life which is then reflected in words and deeds.
No matter how beautiful the words of a preacher sound, they are empty if not accompanied by intense daily prayer.
If a man who makes a daily meditation, examines closely his conscience twice and spends half an hour in mental prayer before the Blessed Sacrament each day, does not correct his failings and makes no progress towards the perfection of his state, I would believe him much to be pitied and quite close to perdition, whatever preaching he may do in order to convert others…
Letter to Father Jean Baptiste Honorat, 1 March 1844, EO I n 32
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