Wednesday, February 16, 2005

On February 16, 1851...
Venerable John Henry Newman, C.O., preached a sermon, of which the following notes survive:

On Labour—Our Work Here

1. INTROD.—Before Lent the Church begins by setting before us work as an introduction.

2. Epistle and gospel—beginning of Genesis. Even before the fall, and much more after—thorns and thistles.

3. This the contrast between before the fall and after. The ground typifies our hearts—and now we have labour.

4. And this will show us the heinousness of the fall, for before it, the labour, the effort, was to sin—before as difficult to sin as now to be a hero. Grace was so great.

5. But grace being gone, the lower nature rose against the upper as the upper against God.

6. This then, I say, our work—labour of one kind or another. It has different names—self-discipline, self-denial, penance, reformation, mortification—all meaning the bringing under of ourselves. Don't think it hard if you find a thing difficult; it is your work.

7. This implied in the subduing our 'ruling passion,' so called.

8. Also exemplified in particular examination.

9. Also done in suffering. Suffering is a work. On satisfaction and satispassio; on bearing pain with sweetness or patience, with sweet faces, ways, voice, etc., etc. On the discipline when associated with the thought of Christ's sufferings, more meritorious; for the mind goes with it and is not otiose.

10. Thus let us begin this sacred time.


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