Teachings of the Saints on Purity
POPE SAINT CLEMENT I, Bishop of Rome, 90 AD
He who is chaste in the flesh should not be proud, for he should not not know that he owes the gift of chastity to Another.
Since, then, we are a holy portion, let us do nothing but what makes for Holiness, shunning slander, foul and sinful embraces, drunkenness and Revolutionary desires and abominable passions, detestable adultery, and Abominable pride. For God, it is said, resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble. Let us therefore associate with those on whom divine grace has been bestowed; let us with humble minds put on the livery of concord, be self Restrained, keep ourselves free from all backbiting and slanderous talk; and let us seek justification by actions and not just words.
SAINT IGNATIUS OF ANTIOCH, from letters written on the way to martyrdom, 107A.D.
If anyone is able to persevere in chastity to honor the flesh of the Lord, let him do so in all humility.
SAINT AMBROSE, Bishop of Milan
We are taught that chastity has three forms: 1. Married Life. 2. Widowhood. 3. Virginity. We do not extol one form as to exclude the others. We reject none of these forms of chastity
St. Ambrose baptized St. Augustine and told him he could not reach heaven unless he reformed his unchaste life.
SAINT THOMAS MORE (d. 1535)
Occupy your minds with good thoughts, or the enemy will fill them with bad ones.
I thought that continence was a matter of our own strength and I knew that I had not the strength. In my foolishness I did not know the word of your scriptures. No one can be continent except as a gift from You.
Remember whatever gender you are that you are leading the life of angels. Begin to be what you will be after life. Virginity shall shine in heaven. Wedded chastity shall shine there . Holy widowhood shall shine there. You will all shine differently but you will all be there, The brilliancy will be unequaled in heaven.
Do not say that you have chaste minds if you have unchaste eyes because an unchaste eye is the messenger of an unchaste heart.
Be thou subject to God and thy flesh subject to thee. Do thou serve Him who made thee so that which was made for thee, may be subject to thee.
SAINT FRANCIS OF ASSISI
He is pure of heart who despises the world, who seeks heaven (cost of heavenly reward is surrender of the unlawful pleasures [lusts] of the flesh), and who always has the Lord his God before his eyes.
SAINT ALPHONSUS LIGOURI
In comparison with a chaste soul, all the riches, all the titles and dignities of the earth are contemptible.
We cannot be His followers unless we sacrifice the sinful pleasures of the flesh.
Priests who are bound to perpetual chastity must take great care to preserve it. You must watch over yourselves with great diligence for chastity is easily lost by negligence.
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