Page:The Saint (1906, G. P. Putnam's Sons).djvu/94

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The Saint

the mystic breath he seemed to feel passing over the assembly, "If we do not purify our ideas of reform through love; if, when the time comes to operate, we do not first purify our hands and our instruments. This indignation, this wrath of which you, Don Paolo, speak, is really a powerful snare which the evil one uses against us; powerful precisely because it bears the semblance of virtue and sometimes, as is the case with the saints really has the substance of virtue. In us it is nearly always pure malevolence, because we do not know how to love. The prayer I love best, after the Pater Noster, is the prayer of Unity, which unites us all in the spirit of Christ, when He prays thus to the Father: 'Ut et ipsi in nobis unum sint.' The desire and hope are always strong within us of a union in God with those of our brothers whose beliefs separate them from us. Therefore say now whether you accept my proposal to found this association. First discuss the question, and then, if the proposal be accepted we will examine the means of promoting it."

Don Paolo exclaimed impetuously, that the principle needed no discussion; and Minucci observed, in a submissive tone, that the object of the meeting was known to all before they came; therefore, by their presence, they had implied their approval and their willingness to bind themselves together in a common action; the question of ways and means remaining still undecided. Abbé Marinier asked permission to speak.