Saint Anthony Mary Claret



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1304 In speaking of this anti-Claret campaign, Don Pantaleón Monserrat wrote: “Under the most sacred and innocent titles, they distribute to cultured society pamphlets and newspapers, that are no more than practical lessons of crime in all its deformity; the unnecessary addition to hearts already corrupt with wickedness to infest those that are not.” And he added in a footnote: “We allude to the obscene pamphlet that, under the title of Camí dret per anar al cel, carries the name of a pious writer, which is said to be printed in Rome; and to the newspaper that circulates secretly with the title Ramillete: which should be considered prohibited in accordance with the 7th rule of the Index” (pastoral letter, April 30, 1864). See Internet Modern History Sourcebook:
Council of Trent: Rules on Prohibited Books


1305 It is presented as a tract with autobiographical characteristics, published in Barcelona in 1864 (32 pp.). Hidden in anonymity, the Saint uncovers for us his interior life during this era, in which an intense defamatory campaign had been launched against him – above all in the press –, which was growing like an uncontrollable tide, until his death. In January of 1864, he wrote from Madrid to his spiritual director: “You could not possibly have any idea of how much hell is working against me: the most atrocious slanders, words, works, death threats; all put into play to see how it discredits and frightens me; but, with the help of God, I do not pay it any mind” (letter to Fr. Joseph Xifré, Madrid, January 15, 1864). Cf. Works, III, pp. 245-261).

1306 Cf. In this volume: General Bibliography.

1307 The manner of taking the particular examination of the love of God is found in the tract Resumen de los principales documentos que necesitan las almas que aspiran a la perfección. Escrito bajo el símbolo de una Paloma (Barcelona 1848) pp. 24 27. Normally, in abbreviated form, it is called La Paloma [The Dove]; for English text see Works III, p. 91-112.

1308 Ps 115:1: “Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to your name give glory.”

1309 Respecting the will of the Saint, these numbers - intended exclusively for prudent and experienced priests - are not published. They can be seen in Mss. Claret, I, 483 488.

1310 Cf. 2 Cor. 2:15.

1311 Certainly he means to say Horche, village of the Guadalajara province, situated in the autonomous region of Castile-La Mancha, and, within it, in the region of La Alcarria, 13 kilometers from the city of Guadalajara.

1312 Fr. José María Mon was born in Madrid on October 24, 1829. He entered the Company of Jesus on July 8, 1852. He was a companion of the hard-working missionaries of Father Pedro Sáenz de Cenzano in various regions of Spain and passed away in Madrid on January 21, 1896 (cf. Revuelta González, Manuel, La Compañía de Jesús en la España contemporánea. II. Expansión en tiempos recios (1884-1906) [Madrid 1991] p. 284).

1313 Father Pedro Sáenz de Cenzano born in Ribaflecha (Logroño) on August 1, 1827. Entered the Company of Jesus on March 23, 1858 in Loyola, already an ordained priest. He died piously in Málaga on January 15, 1901 (cf. Revuelta González, Manuel, o.c., (Madrid 1984) pp. 846, 1067-1069).

1314 Cf. Mk 10:32.

1315 Cf. Mk 11:7.

1316 Claret himself wrote in his notes: “In Madrid in the year 1864, a woman told me that she had cast out three curses and all had been caught up in the same way that she had said” (Mss. Claret, IX, p. 609).

1317 Cf. Mss. Claret, VII, 630.

1318 This chapter was not published either, at the expressed wish of the Saint. It can be seen in Mss. Claret, I, 497 499 and in Hist. Arch. CMF, I, p. 353.

1319 Cf. Autob. 317.

1320 In the manuscript of the Autobiography, chapter 17 is missing. It could be that the Saint never wrote it or that it was simply lost; but he certainly had the intention of writing it, because, in the numbering of the pages, he skips from 18 to 20. In its place, Father James Clotet inserted a blank sheet with the following certification: “The signer, Superior of this House-Mission of Vic, certifies: that the sheet pertaining to page 19 and chapter 17 of the Continuation of the "Biography of Mr. Archbishop D. Anthony Mary Claret" was lost; we do not know how it was lost, nor do we know its content. And, for the record, signed in the same House-Mission, on the 8th of April 1889. – James Clotet, Pbro. Superior (Endorsed).” There is a seal that says: Domus Missionis Vicensis (cf. Mss. Claret, I, 505). According to Father Juan Postius, chapter 17 should contain the account of conscience of the year 1865. (cf. Hist. Arch. CMF, I, p. 295; CpR 16 (1935) 32, 5.).

1321 This chapter maintains a certain parallelism with chapter 18 of part three. Here, it speaks of the locution Anthony, leave. So that it can be easily understood, it explains some circumstances regarding the recognition of the kingdom of Italy. The order of events – significantly altered in this chapter and in chapter 19 – were as follows: General Leopoldo O' Donnell, Duke of Tetuán (1808 1867), President of the Council of Ministers, desires to stop the revolution. In order to obtain this he takes liberalism to the extreme, pressuring the queen to recognize the Kingdom of Italy. The bishops initiate a campaign of fidelity to Pius IX and a protest against the events of Italy (Autob. n. 832). Isabel II promises fidelity (n. 833). She writes to the Pope, who answers her (nn. 841 844). But the queen, deceived and weak, signs the recognition (n. 834). Claret protests (nn. 836 838). Isabel II writes to him so that he does not abandon her (n. 840). The nuncio writes to Claret (nn. 845 851). He receives the locution Go to Rome (n. 839). He seeks advice from Father Joseph Xifré, and he confides with the consultors of the Congregation. The perception is negative: that he should not return to the queen’s side (n. 852). A complete and documented view of this matter can be seen in Fernández, Cristóbal, El confesor de Isabel II..., pp. 239 286; Goñi Galarraga, Joseph María, El reconocimiento de Italia y monseñor Claret, confesor de Isabel II (La correspondencia Barili Claret): Anthologica Annua 17 (1970) 369 462; cf. Pabón, Jesús, España y la cuestión romana (Madrid 1972); Cárcel Ortí, Vicente, El liberalismo en el poder (1833­1868): BAC, Historia de la Iglesia en España (Madrid 1979) V, pp. 170 173.

1322 Cardinal Fernando de la Puente y Primo de Rivera (1808 1867), bishop of Salamanca (1852 1857), archbishop of Burgos (1857 1867) and cardinal from 1861. Discharged from duty as tutor to the Prince of Asturias (the future King Alfonso XII) on July 14, 1865, because of these events. Weathering the storm, he was reinstated to this duty on July 27, 1866.

1323 The King of Naples, Fernando II (born January 12, 1809 and passed away on May 22, 1859), was a blood uncle of Isabel II, since her mother, María Cristina de Borbón, was his sister.

1324 "Her Majesty has assured me that she would rather lose the crown than agree to that" (letter to Father Joseph Xifré, San Ildefonso, July 26, 1862: EC, II, p. 503). "Her Majesty (...) feels very affected, but resolved and determined to suffer exile and even death, if need be, before doing something against the Holy See: she has confided in me as such" (letter to the nuncio Lorenzo Barili, San Ildefonso, July 6, 1865: EC, III, p. 480).

1325 Cf. 1 Mac 3:59.

1326 In that era, the feast of St. Bonaventure was celebrated on July 14th; currently, it is celebrated on the 15th.

1327 Don Leopoldo O’Donnell (Santa Cruz de Tenerife 1809-Biarritz 1867). Captain General of the Island of Cuba in 1843. Count of Lucena, and Duke of Tetuán. Chief of the Liberal Union party. President of the Government (1856-1857, 1858-until March 2, 1863 and from June 21, 1865 to July 10, 1866).

1328 The Spanish text reads: no es tan fiero el leon como le pintan [The lion is not as fierce as they paint him]. An expression attributed to George Herbert (1593-1633), poet and English clergyman. See 302 Herbert's prose works in The Complete works of George Herbert on the Internet:"



1329 The same thing that had happened in April of the year 1855 happened again, when the queen, by intervention of Bishop Alessandro Franchi, refused to sign the law of ecclesiastical and civilian seizure approved by the Court. On that occasion, Isabel II resisted orders by Generals Espartero and O' Donnell on April 25th, but days later, she yielded and signed the new law El liberalismo en el poder (1833­-1868), BAC, Historia de la Iglesia en España [Madrid 1979] V, p. 162). This time, “the political interests defended by the generals held more weight in the spirit of the young queen than the reasons opposed by nuncio Barili, by archbishop Claret, confessor of the sovereign, and by the entire episcopate” (O. c., p. 172).

1330 Indeed, Father Claret had received the official appointment as confessor of the queen on June 5, 1857. After a digression of several months, he would return to the exercise of his duty on December 22, 1865 until March 30, 1869, the date in which he left from Paris en route to Rome, where he would remain until the month of July 1870.

1331 He left La Granja on Wednesday, July 19th. On Friday, the 21st, at night, he undertook the trip to Catalonia, by train, through Zaragoza and Lérida; on the 25th he was in Barcelona, and on the 27th, in Vic with his missionaries.

1332 Three days before, on July 17, 1865, Queen Isabel II had written to Saint Mary Michael of the Blessed Sacrament asking her to persuade her confessor to return. Among other things, the queen said: “Now, my dearest Michael, I have another new affliction and it’s that our good father Claret has taken his leave for hot springs and says that if he improves, he will go to Zarauz; for God, for the Church and for all the saints, and for the affection that the both of us have for him, please make sure that he goes to Zarauz; for if he does not go, I will die; now I deserve that he goes because I am always very good…” (Barrios Moneo, Alberto, Una intervención decisiva en la vizcondesa del Jorbalán [Madrid 1964] p. 275). “The Saint would not answer to these brazen words, or to other messages in which she asked with these or similar words: ‘Michael, forgive me, as Mr. Claret has also forgiven me’ She was pleased in begging for her and for Spain. All of Catholic Spain remained in suspense awaiting the papal reaction that would determine the return or final farewell of the royal confessor" (ib., p. 276; cf. Id., Mujer audaz. Santa Micaela del Santísimo Sacramento [Madrid 1968] pp. 457 459; Vázquez, María, Historia del Instituto de las Adoratrices Esclavas del Santísimo Sacramento y de la Caridad. I (1845-1865) [Madrid 1995] pp. 531-532). If the Mother Sacrament did not respond to Isabel II – according to Sister Elena of the Cross Sagüés – it was “because the Queen was excommunicated on account of having signed the decree of the aforesaid recognition” (cit. by Barrios Moneo, Alberto, Mujer audaz..., ed. cit., p. 143).

1333 Cf. Gorricho, Julio, Epistolario de Pío IX con Isabel II de España: Archi­vum Historiae Pontificiae 4 (1966) 307. The letter is dated May 23, 1865, Madrid.

1334 On May 23, 1849, the Spanish squadron with an army of 4,000 soldiers set sail from Barcelona, under the command of General Fernando Fernández de Cordoba (1809-1883), in the direction of Gaeta, to free Pope Pius IX from his forced captivity and to reinstate him to his See and throne in Rome.

1335 A photocopy of the original can be seen in: Mss. Claret, XIV, 517-519. It was published by Fernández, Cristóbal, El confesor de Isabel II... (Madrid 1964) p. 257; and by Gorricho, Julio, I. c., pp. 307 308.

1336 “The Catholic reaction was unanimous and immediate. The bishops filled their pastoral bulletins protesting against the recognition, and in the offices of the presidency of the Government, thousands of letters in the same regard were received from the hierarchy, from the clergy, and from the catholic laity” (Cárcel Ortí, Vicente, o. c., p. 172).

1337 Bishop Lorenzo Barili (1801 1875). Inter-nuncio in Brazil (1848 1851) and in Colombia (1851 1856), titular Archbishop of Tiana (1857), apostolic nuncio in Spain (1857 1868) and cardinal from 1868.

1338 Cardinal Giácomo Antonelli (Sonnino 1806-Rome 1876). Ordained as deacon and not as priest. After occupying various positions in the Roman Curia, he was appointed in 1847 and, shortly after, named Secretary of State, a post that he held until his death. He was a great statesman, very talented with a steadfast likeableness and pleasant presence, who greatly enjoyed the social life and fine arts. With regard to public matters, he demonstrated a sharp ingenuity, an ability to resolve problems, and excellent administrative capabilities. Regarding him cf. La Cruz (1876, II) 723-733; Aubert, Roger, Antonelli, Giacomo: in Dizionario biografico degli italiani (Roma 1861) III, pp. 484-493; Id., Le pontificat de Pie IX (1846-1878) (Saint-Dizier 1952) passim; Pirri, Pietro, Il cardinale Antonelli tra il mito e la storia: Rivista di storia della Chiesa in Italia (gennaio-aprile 1958) pp. 81-120; Falconi, Carlo, Il cardinale Antonelli (Milano 1983) 628 pp.

1339 That declaration, dated in Barcelona (Barcelona) on July 25, 1865, can be seen in: La Esperanza, July 28, 1865, n. 6.385: EC, II, pp. 913-914, and in Gutiérrez, Federico, El Padre Claret en el periódico La Esperanza (1844-1874), p. 371. This newspaper adds on its own: “The written precedent, on which we refrain from commenting, and which proves that the news we had provided was not groundless, leads us to infer that His Excellency [the] Archbishop declared clearly to Her Majesty the Queen his opinion on the delicate matter at hand, before undertaking his trip to Catalonia” (ib.)

1340 Cf. EC, III, pp. 486-487, nota 5; Bermejo, Jesús, Epistolario pasivo de San Antonio María Claret, II (1858-1864) (Madrid 1994) pp. pp. 47-54; Goñi Galarraga, José María, El reconocimiento de Italia y monseñor Claret, confesor de Isabel II (La correspondencia Barili Claret): Anthologica Annua 17 (1970) 369 461. The handwritten draft of this letter in Italian is found on pages 437- 439.

1341 The Superior General of the Congregation was Father Joseph Xifré (1817­-1899), and the consultors, Fathers James Clotet (1822 1898), Bernardo Sala (1810 1885), Francisco Reixach (1815 1876) and Miguel Rota (1815 1888).

1342 Here is where the Autobiography properly ends. The years that are missing up until the death of the Saint - October 24, 1870 - can be filled in, in part, with the Autobiographical Documents, the Resolutions, the Lights and Graces, the Collection of Letters, and other loose notes. On Wednesday, October 25, 1865, he undertook a trip to Rome, where he arrived on Saturday, the 4th of November. On the 7th and 23rd, he was received by Pious IX. The Pope advised him to return to the side of the queen, which had led him to fall victim to much persecution and even to exile. The Holy Father, in a letter to Isabel II dated January 2, 1866, wrote: "I saw Bishop Claret, and I recognized in him a worthy clergyman; a man dedicated to God, and, although detached from politics, knows only too well its lack of feverishness and the malice of men who are Catholics only by name" (cf. Gorricho, Julio, Epistolario de Pío IX con Isabel II de España: Archivum Historiae Pontificiae 4 [1966] 313). The original of this letter is in Italian.

As founder, he saw the Constitutions of his missionaries approved (December 22, 1865), and as apostle at the service of the Church, he had the chance to participate in the First Vatican Council (1869-1870). Here culminated the apostolic mission of Saint Anthony Mary Claret. During this time, probably between Sunday, December 10th and Wednesday, the 20th, he gave spiritual exercises in the Claretian house of Gracia to a group to be ordained, among whom was St. Henry de Ossó y Cervelló, founder of the Company of Saint Teresa; confirming the latter in his priestly vocation. It could not have been in May 1866, as the biographers of St. Henery had originally estimated, because, as of Thursday, December 21, 1865, Father Claret would never step foot again on his beloved Catalonian land (cf. González, Marcelo, El Venerable Enrique de Ossó, o la fuerza del sacerdocio [Barcelona 1976] 3.ª ed., pp. 90 92); It was corrected, but only partially, in the BAC editions (Madrid 1983) p. 55; in the 1993 version; in the 1997 version, and in the fourth of the JST Editions, published in 2004. St. Henry de Ossó left the following written in his notes: “I was ordained with minor orders and the subdiaconate in Barcelona with Bishop Montserrat (of Maella), who loved me a great deal, and I had the opportunity to do exercises with Father Claret (house of Gracia), to confess with him and to confirm that, yes, it was the will of God that I be priest, with great joy and peace, without temptation ever having come to me, by the mercy of God, against my vocation” (Informative Process of Barcelona, vol. XXII, p. 6: General Archive of the Company of St. Teresa de Jesús (AGSTJ); reproduced in Apuntes de las misericordias del Señor: in Escritos de Don Enrique de Ossó y Cervelló [Roma 1977] III, p. 14).



1343 Here, previous events from the preceding chapter are narrated. It deals with an apologetics article published in the Madrid newspaper La Esperanza (January 24, 1865, p. 2, col. 2 4): in Gutiérrez, Federico, El Padre Claret en el periódico La Esperanza (1844-1874) (Madrid 1987) pp. 361-364). Upon transcribing it, it did not follow the holy archbishop literally. On the other hand, taking it from that newspaper, it was faithfully transcribed by the Revista Católica 58 (1865) 567 570, and in the Boletín Eclesiástico del Obispado de Vic 21 (1865) 108-111.

1344 Cf. Autob. 100.

1345 Don Ramón de Meer y Kindelán, Count of Grá y Barón de Meer (Barcelona 1787-towards the end of the XIX century). He was Captain General of Catalonia (1837-1839 and 1843-1845) and life-long Senator from the year 1845 onward.

1346 Don Manuel Pavía y Lacy (Grenada 1814-Madrid 1896) fought in Catalonia in the first Carlist war (Solsona, 1838) and in the so-called centralist uprising (1843). He was Captain General of Catalonia (1845-1847 and 1847-1848) and minister of War (1847), and later Captain General of the Philippines (1854). Before the revolution of September 1868, he was commander of the forces loyal to Isabel II, who were defeated in Alcolea on September 28, 1868 (cf. Sòria i Ràfols, Ramon, Diccionari Barcanova d'Història de Catalunya [Barcelona 1989] p. 314).

1347 The pallium is a circular band of white lamb’s wool, with six crosses of black silk, that is only used by archbishops and which is placed around the shoulders.

1348 The word trabucaire means: bandit, highwayman, thief, criminal.

1349 "Don’t get involved in politics" was always, for Father Claret, an indisputable principle and a firm intention, maintained in an unbreakable form in his priesthood as well as archbishop and confessor to the queen; “being as such – he himself says – many times I have been pierced” (Autob. n. 629). It is a fact that his apolitical action – constantly put to the service of the Church – could have had, and in fact did have, political consequences. But Claret was not a schemer, nor was he ambitious, nor a manipulator, as some so imagined and painted him slanderously in his time and even after his death. General O' Donnell, leader of the liberal party and government leader, with brief interruptions from 1856 to 1866, declared: “Never have I stumbled on my road with [Fr.] Claret.” And Lorenzo Arrazola, seven times minister of Grace y Justicia, three times minister of State, and once as President of the Council, affirmed: “[Fr.] Claret does not want to know anything of politics” (IPT ses. 4). Nevertheless, the Saint knew its secrets well, as is evidenced here with much clarity in the image that he offers us.

The same Saint said in the "Testimony of the truth": “What I should do and do with all my strength and aided by the grace of God, is make sure that Her Majesty is a good Christian, a good queen; regarding the rest, I pay no mind as to her choice of Peter, John, or Edward for her government" (open letter, Madrid, December 12, 1864: EC, II, p. 835).



1350 The tract written by Claret is titled Ramillete de lo más agradable a Dios y útil al género humano (Madrid 1858) 32 pp.

1351 In the original, it reads “had.”

1352 In the original, it says “will have.”

1353 Claret’s work is titled Llave de oro o serie de reflexiones que para abrir el corazón cerrado de los pobres pecadores ofrece a los confesores nuevos... (Barcelona 1857) 144 pp. Among the tendentious editions made after the death of the Saint, are: F. P., La llave de oro del P. Claret (Barcelona around 1880) 48 pp.; La clé d’or, en Les mystères du confessionnal (Paris 1968) pp. 213 260; La chiave d’oro, en I misteri del confessionale (Torino 1969) pp. 197 240; Der goldene Schlüssel, in Die Gegeimnisse des Beichtstuhls (Bonn 1969) pp. 203 242; La clé d’or, in Manuel secret du parfait confesseur (Montreal 1971) pp. 9 59.

1354 Lk 23:34.

1355 Cf. Lk 23:34. – A few notes on loving the enemies can be seen in: Mss. Claret, IX, 346-350.

1356 A true storm of defamations and persecutions was unleashed against Father Claret. Suffice to know he suffered 14 attacks. Some – even pious people – were dragged down by this wave. Claret was, without a doubt, one of the most slandered and persecuted men of the 19th century. “He was being slandered by the impious more than anybody else in these times, and poorly defended by the good, because he always held himself above the political parties; but the pious people who knew him closely took him as a saint, admired his absolute silence before the most vulgar of slanders” (Aguilar, Francisco de Asís, Compendio de historia eclesiástica general [Madrid 1898] 6.ª ed., II, p. 448).

1357 Le Monde, Thursday, April 27, 1865.

1358 “Upon beginning the third trimester of the 19th century, concretely in 1866, Madrid was an ant hill of Masonic lodges which... had no other motive than the de-Christianization of the world. In Madrid alone, there were 49 with a total of 21,000 freemasons" (Brunet, Manuel, Actualidad del P. Claret [Vic 1953] p. 52).

1359 Two of them are pantheistic and idealistic philosophers: Georg Wilhem Friedrich Hegel (1770-1831) and Friedrich Wilhem Josef Schelling (1775-1854); and the third, David Strauss (1808-1874), philosopher and radical theologian, author of a polemic Vida de Jesús. 

1360 It refers to Don Juan Jorge Braun, born in Isny (Germany), he was a professor in Oscott (England), Paris, Mataro, and Lima; and, from October of 1863, professor of languages in the seminary and in the school of El Escorial. “Distinguished German polyglot, consecrated to teaching in our country, whose literature has, as of late, been enriched with the publication of very notable works” (Revista Católica 59 [1865, I) 237-238). In the aftermath of the September 1868 revolution, he returned to Germany, where he published a notable Spanish grammar book. He was transferred later to Spain, where he spent his last years dedicated to teaching in the school established by the marquis of Manzanedo en Santoña (Santander), where he passed away in 1875. He composed grammar books for several languages. In the Claretian Museum of Chile, a copy of the Braun English grammar book is conserved, which carries the following dedication by the author to Father Claret: “To His is Excellency and Most Illustrious Don Anthony Mary Claret, Archbishop of Trajanópolis, Confessor to Her Royal Majesty the Queen, President of the Royal Seminary and College of San Lorenzo del Escorial, Homage of deep respect and gratitude, San Lorenzo del Escorial and December 1864, The Author.” It is rather unusual that the author writes "1864" and not "1865", the year of the publication. Perhaps this was due to a distraction, or otherwise, to the fact that the book was already printed by the end of 1864. The work dedicated to the Saint is: Nueva Gramática Inglesa. A theoretical-practical course by J. J. Braun, Dr. of Philosophy, professor of Hebrew, German, and English in the Royal Seminary and college of S. Lorenzo de Escorial. School - Longum iter [est per] praecepta. Brevis et efficax per exempla - Seneca. Madrid 1865, Libreria de A. Duran Cra. de Jerónimo 2. [The Latin quote was on the cover of the book: “Teaching by precept is a long road, but brief and beneficial is the way by example” Seneca, Letters 1, 6.5].

1361 Apuntes para el régimen de la diócesis (Madrid 1865) 2.ª ed., appendix 3, pp. 195 259.

1362 Phil 1:23

1363 In Autob. Doc. V, he gives the probable date as 1819, or when he was 12 years old. The main duty of the prayer-schedule was to say the whole fifteen decades of Rosary on a particular day. The day assigned for the young Claret was June 29.

1364 Cf. Autob. n. 94; Autob. Doc. V.

1365 These processions on the first Sundays of the month were obligatory in the Confraternity of the Rosary.

1366 Cf. Autob. n. 48.

1367 Cf. Autob. n. 71.

1368 Cf. Gen 39:12.

1369 Cf. Autob. n. 72.

1370 Cf. Autob. nn. 95-98.

1371 Claret arrived in Vic to begin his seminary studies in 1829. In this document he focuses on 1831, which was to be decisive for him because of the apparition of the Blessed Virgin and the lasting effect it had on him.

1372 Claret always had the fondest memories of this congregation and its pious practices, because of the spiritual good he derived from it. In the Well-Instructed Seminarian, he states: “This congregation should unfailingly be established in every seminary chapel, in order to foster and preserve the piety of young students.” And he adds this recollection: “When we were making our studies in the seminary of Vic, we held the congregation of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the seminary chapel. Every third Sunday we had morning and evening services in honor of Mary. In the morning, His Excellency the Bishop would give us Communion during the Mass he celebrated; and at the service we held in the evening, His Excellency would preach to us. I can still recall one talk in which he told us: “Perhaps someone might be wondering why the Bishop spends so much time with his students – monthly retreats, yearly retreats, ordination retreats – Why all that? Ah, but I know what I’m doing! This way I know I’ll have good priests, and what a joy that will be, both for me and for the diocese!” (WIS [Barcelona 1860] I, pp. 328-29).

1373 Cf. Jn 19:26-27.

1374 “Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers, against the rulers of this world of darkness, the evil spirits in regions above.” (cf. Autob. n. 101).

1375 Cf. Autob. n. 48.

1376 Acts 17:28.

1377 A little before he had written: “Prayer is so necessary, that St. John Chrysostom says that as the body separated from the soul is dead, so too, is the soul that walks separated from prayer: and he adds that as water is for the plants so is prayer for the soul” (WIS, LR [Barcelona 1860] I, p. 48). In one of his manuscripts he wrote: “Think that in God we are like the bird in the air, the fish in water. In ipso vivimus, movemur et sumus (In Him we live, move, and have our being)” (Mss. Claret, X, 432).

1378 Cf. Autob. n. 113.

1379 Cf. Autob. nn. 114-119

1380 Lk 2:49.

1381 In the Autobiography (no. 91) Claret tells us that only tonsured externs and boarding students were allowed to belong to this congregation . Others had to ask the bishop for permission to enter it. Since Claret, an extern student, did not receive tonsure until February 2, 1832, he must have been granted an extraordinary permission to enter this congregation .

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