POWER OF ATTORNEY

 

Part B

Gentleness

 

A Fruit of the Holy Spirit

(Compiled by Michael T. Sullivan, MD)

 

God the Father, Our Lord Jesus Christ

and

Our Lady of Emmitsburg

speak on

Gentleness

 

 

Part A

The Gift of Life

The Gift of the Mother--A Gentle Woman

The Gift of the Son

The Gift of the Holy Spirit

The Gifts of the Holy Spirit

The Fruits of the Holy Spirit

The Gentleness of the Father

The Gentleness of Jesus

 

Part B

Our Gentleness--a Fruit to Seek and Cherish

His Gentleness--a Fruit to Share

Closing Rally

Thank You

 

 

 

 

 

Part B

Our Gentleness

A Fruit to Seek and to Cherish

 

Gentleness and love, gentleness and kindness, gentleness and meekness--all seem to be almost inseparable for Our Lord and Our Lady of Emmitsburg as they speak to Gianna Sullivan and the world about the essential steps on that journey on which we are all invited--that being to personal holiness and union with God:

 

"God the Father graces you to live life fully, in peace and in joy, with all the virtues of meekness, patience, kindness, charity, hope and love.  So do not be threatened by the Divine.  Invite God into your midst, and in each person you will see you, because Jesus is with you.  So too Jesus is within each person you see.  Thus, you will all be One in a mystical marriage, a union.  (Public OLOE, Jan. 8, 2006)  Peace comes when people see that you live in peace.  Then they want what you have.  You must radiate love and gentleness and kindness, otherwise evil begets evil.  This is what God desires for you.  (Pubic OLOE, Dec. 3, 2006)  However, there is the need to be prudent and wise and to look in prayer and silence with all simplicity and forgiveness of neighbor toward what the new world, the new tomorrow will bring.  This new era of Christ is one in which this forgiveness, this love, this gentleness and kindness will flourish."  (Private OLOE, Jan. 12, 2003)

 

In His Lessons to the world, Our Lord emphasizes the seriousness of His Mission, and what could result in our failure to respond and our failure to assist others.  He also reminds us that it is in the ordinary things in our daily lives that we grow in extraordinary love--love for God, for ourselves and for those we serve:

 

"I am here to save you…This is not a game.  This is true; for I am Truth, and this is serious!  It is serious because of the many lost souls who could be turned away from Me because of the lack of tenderness and gentleness which are so needed.  (JOM, Vol I, #16, Dec. 13, 1988)  Everything you do, do as if it were for Me.  Be proficient, yet gentle.  Touch everything with an extraordinary love,  This is how, in your ordinariness, you become extraordinary….Take time, and love the small works you do….If you can take care of the small items, then you will be able to love and tend to bigger projects with the same love….The way you treat one another, no matter what position or title in life you hold, will be of the same love if you start to love all the weak and the strong with a gentle, extraordinary care.  (JOM, Vol IV, #35, July 21, 1992)   Go at My pace.  Face the obstacles on the road with patience and gentleness of self, but in confidence that God will deliver you; and you shall appreciate crossing the finish line far more, because your efforts will leave tracks for your beloved to follow.  (JOM, Vol IV, #48, Aug, 3, 1992)  Do not be troubled, as you may initially fluctuate in your temperaments.  Abandon further.  Be gentle on yourselves and keep surrendering.  I will grace you and protect you as you grow in love.  (JOM, Vol IV, #89, Sept. 15, 1992)

 

 

Very early in her appearances here in Emmitsburg, Our Lady highlights the importance of these virtues and fruits as we grow in knowledge of God's Love for each of us and in self-knowledge:

 

"Rest in my Son's Sacred Heart….Jesus is your protection, love and intimate friend.  Blessed are those who are meek and mild of heart.  Simple, yet so consumed by the flame of His Sacred Heart, you are all called to be blessed by being meek and humble of heart….Tonight I bless you with the grace of meekness.  (Public OLOE, Dec. 14, 1993)  Nothing can unfold unless God allows it, and God allows trials to unfold because He loves you and wants you to know the Truth.  He wants you to see yourself as you are.  He wants you to see Him as He is.  But God can only love….Love and gentleness are virtues given to you so you will know how much God loves you.  Ponder my words and be open and ready always to endure all trials, for this is how God graces you with virtues and self-knowledge.  (Public OLOE Jan. 5, 1995)  Accept God's Will as it unfolds daily, and be joyful little children….Accept your frailties with gentleness and trust that God's Hand is upon you.  (Public OLOE, June 29, 1995)  Absorb yourself in His Love, and you will be secure, gentle and fearless.  You will rest quietly in the loving contemplation of God and be wonderfully nourished."  (Public OLOE, Feb. 29, 1996)

 

As with so many things in the spiritual life, gentleness does not appear to be an elective, but is rather a required course.  It seems to be what is needed not only to love God, but also to love ourselves as well as our neighbors.  From it will flow the meekness and humility so needed to live in the Divine Will and to most fully benefit from God's Mercy.  Our Lady of Emmitsburg so beautifully makes all these links:

 

"Gentleness is what is needed to meet challenges.  It is necessary to meet challenges with love in order to move ahead valiantly and with courage.  Love and gentleness of yourself will allow you to be gentle with others.  Love and gentleness will allow you to meet failures and vices of your own flesh and make them victorious in God's Love. (Public OLOE, Mar. 14, 1996)  Remember that you are imperfect, and that no person can live an entire life without committing some fault.  Be gentle on yourself.  God will grace you and help you to be merciful."  (Public OLOE, Mar. 28, 1996)

 

"And be ye kind one to another, merciful and forgiving one another, even as God has forgiven you in Christ." 

(Eph 4:32)

 

"His Mercy allows you to see within yourself.  You will recognize how valuable you are in the Eyes of God….In your humility you can attain complete union with Him because you will see that all you have received has resulted from His Mercy and not from your own merits.  You will desire to do the Will of the Father…As you develop a meek and humble heart, Jesus will grace you to enter a life of union with Him, a life of obedience to the Father and a life of charity."  (Public OLOE Oct. 2, 1997)

 

"When you live in His Holy Will, death has no power over you.  Praise Him in all your works, thoughts and actions by desiring to love as He loves.  Allow your heart to overflow with joy and simplicity, and you will experience His gentleness, beauty and hope.  (Public OLOE, June 18, 1998)  This does not mean you will be exempt from trials and tribulations of all sorts, for these prepare you for eternal glory and allow you to grow in perfection of His Holiness through meekness and humility."  (Public OLOE, Nov, 12, 1998)

 

 

Gianna herself would be the first to admit that for herself, gentleness requires a more deliberate and concentrated effort.  Like her, most of us can at times be blind to our lack of gentleness and kindness, thus projecting what may appear to be a lack of love.  Our Lady of Emmitsburg explains that it is through suffering that one grows in patience, leading to the wisdom, which then allows one to see God as He is and ourselves as He sees us and as we truly are.  All of these gifts and virtues and fruits come with responsibility and accountability; and free will allows us to walk away from them, but humility will always allow us to return:

 

"You, my little one, (Gianna) are invited to be of a gentle nature, gracious and friendly; and yet, you must proceed with the plan for my Son's mission to move forward.…He has blessed your vision; and you must not be afraid to move forward as a leader, but as a gentle one.  (Private OLOE, Mar. 21, 2005)  I have spoken to you about being all-loving to family members: to show love, to lift them up with joy and kindness, to smile and to share the gift of gentleness.  (Public OLOE, Nov. 23, 2006)  You have endured much suffering.  As you suffer, you grow in patience.  As you grow in patience, you grow in wisdom; and wisdom grants you the grace to be all to all people--gentle and kind, listening and pure….God has allowed you to be enlightened in the areas that you need to change; moreover, through unity and love of one another, you have rallied together in support to help one another.  In doing this, it makes change easier, and it allows you to become more pure."  (Private OLOE, Aug. 31, 2009) 

 

"A mild answer calms wrath;

but a harsh word stirs up anger." 

(Proverbs 15:1)

 

"Watch what comes from your lips, because what is said, for every word you will be held accountable.  Work on gentleness of spirit.  No one is perfect, but try and love and keep trying!  The way of the world will tell you to do other than this.  You can live in the world and enjoy yourself, but you can still have the discretion to know what to do, how to be safe and how to act wisely.  (Private OLOE, June 228, 2009)  Be strong in your love and gentle in understanding and in your words.  If you fail, then try again; because God knows, and if you genuinely try, the grace of His gifts is upon you."  (Private OLOE, June 11, 2008)

 

And to all who have faithfully listened to Our Lady's words and have tried to incorporate them into their daily lives, she adds:

 

"I invite you to continue forward in this most precious Way and walk of Life, one which is compassionate, gentle, challenging, and yet most rewarding.  My Son will give you all these things as you continue day by day to give yourselves fully to Him, surrendering to His Most Divine Will.  (Private OLOE, Feb. 12, 2004)  I praise God because each of you has given yourself, all of yourself, to the Truth.   You have given yourself to be a light in the midst of darkness, to be a sign of hope in the midst of hopelessness, and to be a pure, gentle and genuine child, one who seeks only to live in joy and to help all others to be happy.  The Truth must always be known, because only the Truth can set you free.  (Private OLOE, Mar. 16, 2005)  God is with you and I am with you as your Mother, knowing the prudence of the Truth and how to guide you with gentleness, yet challenge you with strength in order that you can persevere in fortitude.  You also are given these gifts.  (Private OLOE, April 12, 2009)  God has given me to you, and I will protect you.  I will look after you.  I will point the way to Him so you become all-loving and all-giving, compassionate and kind, meek and gentle, strong with fortitude, strength and perseverance, holy and wise.  Know, little ones, the greatest gift you have is God within you."  (Private OLOE, May 10, 2009)

 

"Blessed are the meek, for they shall possess the land."

 (Mt 5:4)

 

"There is much fear within people, but what you can bring to the forefront is my triumphant love.  You can be confident; and in that confidence you can be gentle; and in your gentleness you can be compassionate; and in your compassion you can reveal the Truth. "  (Private OLOE, Jan 12, 2003)

 

Certainly, in our secular world where success usually does not hinge on our gentleness and meekness, it is not surprising that one may meet rejection, ridicule and even physical or psychological harm.  St. Francis of Assisi undoubtedly knew what it is like to walk against the grain, to swim up stream.  He too offered his sentiments to Gianna on how to react to that negativity:

 

"When you are loving and silent to those who aim to harm you, they respond favorably to change and succumb to God's Way.  When you are gentle, yet firm, you are able to influence the path souls take.  When you have unwavering faith and confidence, those who desire to control you back down and become children of Peace."  (Private Message from St. Francis at his Crypt in Assisi, Nov. 19, 2007)

 

One of St. Francis' most repeated quotes is, "Preach the Gospel at all times, and when necessary, use words." Yes, so often it is those actions done with gentleness and kindness that will change hearts, rather than intellectual debates, threats and bullying.  Our Lady of Emmitsburg reinforces these wise words of St. Francis:

 

"People in the world may not know what you think or what you do.  What matters is what is in your heart, and what lives in your heart is then portrayed through your actions.  You have the great gifts of gentleness and kindness.  You have been gifted with wisdom so you know what is good and what is bad.  Remain faithful to Jesus, and those gifts will only grow and grow; so that you will become a pillar of Light and a leader for the world to follow because Jesus is within you, and others will want what you have.  At first many may be jealous and envious, unfortunately due to sin.  But through your love, kindness and gentleness, they will see what you have, admire you, and then turn to God so that they too can receive special graces and gifts from Heaven."  (Private OLOE, May 17, 2009)

 

"Your adornment should not be an external one….

but rather the hidden character of the heart,

expressed in the imperishable beauty of a gentle and calm disposition, which is precious in the sight of God."

(1 Pet 3:4)

 

 

 

His Gentleness

A Fruit to Share with Others

 

"For three years now I have come in search of fruit on this fig tree,

but have found none.  So cut it down. 

Why should it exhaust the soul?"

(Lk 13:7)

 

A gift given freely by God to one of His children will most often wither or lay waste if it is not shared.  Our Lady of Emmitsburg challenges us not to waste those gifts, nor let the fruits wither and die:

 

"Through wisdom you gain purity of heart and a vision that is clear, sincere and without guile, simple, gentle and humble.  Through your works, charity grows and extends beyond the world.  O' my servants, if you only knew how loved you are and how every moment of your life is guided by Him, you would be always at peace and filled with joy….Your calling is one that is greater than that of those who live in the world, and that is to be Him in all your works and in all you do, say, think and act--completely, unreservedly and unconditionally."

(Private OLOE, Nov. 19, 2007)

 

"You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your being,

with all your strength, and with all your mind,

and your neighbor as yourself. 

(Lk 10:27)

 

It is by becoming whole in our relationship with God that we are able then to love Him in our neighbor.  Our Lord in His Lessons warns that those who choose an alternative way will never be at peace:

 

"My people are precious, and all need the gentleness of love to replace their fears and brokenness.  I am with My people.  I hope in My people.  I encourage My people to take that leap of love of themselves and their God.  I wait for them through you.  Give to them My Love through giving of yourself, and My Love will stay with them.  (JOM, Vol IV, #52, Aug. 7, 1992)  Be gentle with those people with whom you are frustrated….Remain whole in your relationship with Me first, above all; and then your love, gentleness and humble way will speak from a distance to all in need.  (JOM, Vol IV, #88, Sept. 4, 1992)   It grieves me that many of My people have chosen to walk the way of evil….They want, but they refuse to give….Since they are never satisfied, they are never at peace.  Only those who bow their heads under the yoke of God can receive true wisdom through gentleness and meekness of heart."  (JOM, Vol V, #28, Nov. 2, 1995)

 

Our Lady of Emmitsburg shares that it is through our prayer, our helping hand, our redemptive suffering, and the gentleness and compassion we show our neighbor that we are then able to pass on all those blessings God has given to us:

 

"Pray so that you will be able to see God's goodness in all people and to genuinely love one another and respond to their needs with gentleness….Be grateful for His goodness and the many gifts with which He has blessed you….Love one another and give in simpleness to the needs of others and to the needs of your own self.  (Public OLOE, Aug. 17, 1995)  Help all people who seem lost and confused through actions of love.  They will be encouraged and regain their hope when they look to you as an example of love and gentleness.  All those who persevere and hope will bring a new day of goodness.  You can rise above hatred, difficulties and all challenges with love, gentleness and perseverance.  (Public OLOE, Mar. 14, 1996)  Your neighbor may have faults, but there are also defects in you….You can overcome your burdens and difficulties through the grace I obtain for you from God….Utilize every opportunity and occasion of such sacrifices to glorify God through love and gentleness….Pray for the virtue of gentleness and the spirit of Peace."  (Public OLOE, Sept. 1, 1994)

 

"A slave of the Lord should not quarrel,

but should be gentle with everyone, able to teach, tolerant,

correcting opponents with kindness. 

(2 Tim 2:24-25)

 

"Pray for all people, and love with the Heart of God….An understanding heart, a listening ear, an inviting tone of voice and a supportive comment, and a gentle smile will help soothe the agony and pain in someone's life and will give them the hope and encouragement to persevere.  God will take all His loved ones to His Heart and comfort those who mourn.  (Public OLOE, Sept 9, 1999)  You are blessed.  Now, pass on your blessing to those in need with an open heart, a loving and kind spirit, gentle words and the determination to please God with all your heart and mind."  (Private OLOE, May 23, 2007)

 

Our Lady further points out that it is in the simplicity of our actions where fruitfulness and Truth often lie.  Our kindness and gentleness can certainly enhance our fruitfulness in living the Divine Will and even compensate for the lack of fruitfulness in the O' so many who seem indifferent to the Divine Will at this point in their lives:

 

"In the simplicity of all your actions there shall lie the fruitfulness and the Truth of God's desires.  So just do as I have asked.  Be kind and gentle to all those around you.  (Private OLOE, Sept. 16, 2003Do not be negative.  Always look to how you can support one another with words of praise.  (Private OLOE, Nov. 6, 2004Through all your good works that are offered for humanity and through all the good works that every person on earth is invited to accomplish, each of you can make up for those who are indifferent and who are lacking, lacking not only in their faith, but in works of charity, of love, and of kindness and meekness." (Private OLOE, Dec. 27, 2005)

 

Previously, Our Lady of Emmitsburg has warned that Satan's last and most aggressive attack is on the family and the children because these are the very foundations of Christian life and the Church.

 

"There are so many broken families, and you will see more and more people who are broken and in need of love and gentle care.  You are invited to be instruments of God's Love and to gently care for those who have been infected with coldness of heart and who are afflicted with pain and anger.  Never before in history have people grown so immune to the effects of Love."  (Public OLOE, Jan. 7, 1999) 

 

"This is a time when moral values and purity are not topics of importance in the lives of many parents.  Yet, if parents do not teach the children in ways of love and purity, who will set the stage which will mold their future for the rest of their lives?  When the children are developing, knowledge is infused into them through the interaction of their mothers and fathers.  They can be exposed to love and gentleness or brokenness and pain.  They begin to understand the meaning of acceptance, rejection and indifference.  They become independent and begin to choose good values or bad values.  It is essential to make a conscious effort to repeatedly lay the foundation for good moral values, values which involve purity, obedience to God's Word, honesty, respect for others, respect for life and the essence of dignity….Patience, forgiveness and love teach children to be patient, forgiving and loving."  (Public OLOE, Mar. 25, 1999) 

 

And finally Our Lady warns of the ever-present risks of pride and arrogance in our dealings with others.  It is often through this type of self-righteousness that affliction to others and our own spiritual backsliding can occur:

 

“So be gentle and show acts of love and charity to others, or you will not be able to recognize any sign from Heaven because of your own pride and arrogance.  This only leads to affliction and self-destruction.  The choice is yours, but know that I love you and will not abandon you.  I am your Mother who will always love you and point the way to My Son."  (Public OLOE, July 20, 2000)

 

 

Closing Rally

 

All of the children in the world are Our Lady's spiritual children, and thus, our spiritual brothers and sisters in the Mystical Body of Christ.  As such, our loving Mother rallies her children on, for this is a team effort--both the salvation of our own souls as well as the salvation of all in the world:

 

"All things are possible with God.  If you but unite in a gentle loving heart, respectful of one another, there can be unity and there can be peace! (Public OLOE, Sept. 2, 2007)  You must rally everyone together and give everyone the opportunity to grow, to love, and to serve in charity, with compassion, with gentleness, but with strength and fortitude.  Persevere in all that you do, and reach out to all peoples of all nations; for all are loved by God."  (Private OLOE, Sept. 21, 2009)

 

Thank You!

 

For over 2000 years Our Lady has been praying, inviting, guiding, protecting and thanking her children.  And although this will occur until the end of the world, there seems to be something unique about these times in which we are now living--the end of this era.  Probably never before has there been so many distractions from the Truth, and never before have so many souls been at risk.  But Our Lady of Emmitsburg certainly shows no signs of losing hope, as she thanks her children for valuing these O' so powerful qualities that the world no longer recognizes:

 

"I can tell you, changes are coming….All that I have said shall unfold.  I am not only a Queen, I am a simple humble Mother.  As your Mother, I take you into my mantle.  I clothe you.  I bathe you in the gifts of the Holy Spirit.  I keep you free from sin if you desire to follow unconditionally and wholeheartedly my Son's Way.  I give you His blessing and His Peace.  I thank you for your time, your commitment, your love, your gentleness, your almsgiving, your prayers, and your entire selves.  For all these I thank you.  As a Mother should always be proud of her children, know that I am proud of you. (Private OLOE, Aug. 22, 2003)  Thank you, little ones, for your 'yes', and for your littleness, your gentleness and your childlike ways."  (Private OLOE, July l6, 2004)

 

 

Gentle woman, quiet light,

Morning star, so strong and bright,

Gentle Mother, peaceful dove,

Teach us wisdom; teach us love.

 

 

 

"Gentleness" is what is needed to meet challenges.

It is necessary to meet challenges with love

in order to move ahead valiantly and with courage.

(Public OLOE, Mar. 28, 1996)

 

 

**Internet Resources:

1.  Catechism of the Catholic Church

2.  Merriam-Webster's Dictionary

3.  Catholic Reference online Dictionary

4.  Heartlight,org May 7, 2001

5.  Spirit Home.org, April 9, 2009

6.  Hail Mary, Gentle Woman, Carey Landry, 1975