Thought for the Day – 11 July – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
The Good Odour of Christ
“Everyone has an attractive side to his personality which can draw others towards good or towards evil, for a man’s behaviour, countenance and conversation, reflect his inner spirit.
Charm is very often a mysterious and undefinable quality.
Sometimes you may meet a man of the world who has forgotten that he has an immortal soul and lives purely for pleasure.
Even before he speaks to you, you can read on his lips and in his eyes, the kind of man he is.
If you fail to resist and to do your best to remain on a higher plane, you will be overwhelmed by the charm of his personality.
Your can also encounter charm, however, in a privileged soul, who is in constant contact with God.
You can find it in the monk who has left the world, in order to meditate on God and to pay for his own salvation and for the salvation of his brothers in Christ.
You can meet it in a Saint, one of those rare men, who lives in the world but thinks all the time of God.
When you encounter this supernatural charm, you experience a longing to be good and holy also.
You can see a reflection of Heaven in the eyes of a Saint.
When he speaks to you, words, which if uttered by somebody else, would have no force, stir you and urge you towards all that is good.
What exactly is this quality of attractiveness?
It is “the sweet odour of Christ,” the spiritual fragrance of virtue.
Anyone who met St Aloysius Gonsaga, felt a yearning to be pure.
Anyone who heard the unadorned sermons of the Cure d’Ars, wept for his sins and was set on fire with the love of God and the desire of everlasting happiness.
It was the same with all the Saints.
Do we influence others in this way?”