Thought for the Day – 14 January – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971) – Tuesday of the First week in Ordinary Time, Year A
“In that place of never-ending suffering, there will be three punishments to torture us.
There will be the worm of conscience which does not die – “Their worm dies not” (Mk 9:43).
This is the awful realisation that we could have saved ourselves but are lost for all eternity, that God gave us so many graces and we damned ourselves, by abusing them.
Now there is no longer any remedy, because the mercy of God has been succeeded once and for all, by His justice.
In the second place, there is fire!
This is a real fire but altogether different from the material fire we know in this world, which was created by God for our benefit and service.
The fire of hell, on the other hand, was created by Divine Justice, purely to punish us.
It is a special kind of fire which tortures body and soul and the rebel angels, as well as damned human beings.
It could be called discerning, insofar, as it torments, more or less mercilessly, according to the gravity of the sin.
These flames embrace every evil and exclude every good.
They are flames which will never be extinguished, flames which burn but do not consume, flames without light – dark and accompanied by the shrieking of eternal despair.
The very thought of this horrible dungeon of torments should spur us onto begin immediately, a life of virtue and Christian perfection.”