Monday 8 August 2022

Patience - Richard F. Clarke S.J. - CTS Devotions

Richard F. Clarke S.J.
ISBN 9781860820243
CTS Booklet D018

This is the first book I have read by Richard F. Clarke S.J., he lived from 1839 to 1900.  I believe this is the only recently republished volume by him from the Catholic Truth Society. Over the last few years I have read 300 books and booklets from the CTS. And I have been greatly blessed by many. I have read many great books, many wonderful series, and a slew of excellent authors. I have ready a lot of books in the CTS Devotions and Prayers Series that have been of benefit to my faith.

The description of this volume is:

“Richard Clarke was a prolific writer of small, thoughtful booklets: this booklet on patience is a typical example. Trouble of every kind surrounds us, he says, from without and from within, some unmerited, some through our own fault. It is almost strange that we cling on so hard to a life which is often so troublesome! Where does rebellion end and patience begin? What meaning do sufferings have? Christ invites us to receive both trouble and patience from his hands.”

This volume was originally published in 1893, and this reprint edition is from 1997. There is no eBook edition available, which I consider a pity. There is a different volume called ‘Patience: Meditations for a Month’ from Loreto Publications which I believe is a different book altogether based on that title and the content of this booklet. The chapters and sections in this work are:

Patience and Suffering
     What is Patience
     The Need of Patience
     The Divine Patience
     On Various Trials of Our Patience
     The Mystery of Suffering
     The Solution of the mystery of Suffering

Patience and Impatience
     The Praises of Patience
     The First Degree of Patience
     The Second Degree of Patience
     The Third Degree of Patience
     On Impatience
     On Physical Impatience
     On Complaining

     The Endurance of Temptation
     Patience under Temptations
     On Patience in Sickness
     Patience under Bereavement
     On Patience under Contempt
     Some Motives for Patience under Contempt

Examples of Patience
     The Patience of Job
     The Source of Job’s Patience
     The Reward of Job’s Patience
     The Patience of Mary
     The Patience of Jesus Christ
     The Patience of the Saints
     The Patience of the Martyrs
     The Patience of the Angels
     The Patience of the Holy Souls

Fruits of Patience
     The First Fruit of Patience: Peace
     The Second Fruit of Patience: Hope
     The Third Fruit of Patience: Joy

I highlighted several passages while reading this volume. Some of them are:

“Patience is therefore a virtue worth cultivating quite apart from any motives of religion. Like all else that is good, it smooches the rugged path of life. Have I not learned by experience that it is a blessed gift which they who lack have to suffer miseries unknown lo the patient?”

“Grant me patience, O my God, since I am surrounded with occasions in which I have need of it. Grant that I may love it and practise it for love of You!”

“Suffering is the payment for joy to come. The willing acceptance of it is the surest road to a high place in Heaven.”

“Instead of dreading it, we ought to court it and welcome every occasion for its exercise. Every act of patience brings us nearer to Heaven, and the test of our fitness for the Kingdom of God is, have we learned to suffer with perfect patience?”

“When we are studying to acquire a virtue, it is generally the better plan to begin with external actions, and thence to proceed to the interior dispositions whence those actions proceed. In accordance with this rule, we must begin by repressing all signs of resentment and anger when we are offended, or when someone crosses our path, or hinders some work in which we are engaged.”

“No one enjoys any peace as long as he is yielding to feelings of impatience: he discontented, miserable, uneasy. He finds intolerable what he could bear well enough if only he would make the necessary effort, and gulp down the rising irritation or suppress the angry words.”

“An impatient man always makes a bad impression. If I could see myself as others see me when I give way to impatience, I should be thoroughly ashamed and very careful not to make myself so foolish again.”

“On account of all such impatience we should humble ourselves, as being a sign of faults indulged in the past, not of present sin.”

“If we could have seen Mary upon earth, we should have been especially struck by her undisturbed peace. This was owing to her perfect patience and readiness to accept everything at God's hand. “Behold the handmaid of the Lord: let it be done to me according to your word.” If I desire peace, this must be the motto of my life.”

This book was an excellent read, the examples given, the lessons, the clean and concise text. It was of great benefit to read this book. Even though it was written over 100 years ago the advice is as relevant and applicable today. I greatly enjoyed this volume and wish more of Richard F. Clarke S.J.’s work were still available.

Note: This book is part of a series of reviews: 2022 Catholic Reading Plan! For other reviews of books from the Catholic Truth Society click here.

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