Fulton Sheen, fully Archbishop Fulton John Sheen

Sheen, fully Archbishop Fulton John Sheen

American Roman Catholic Archbishop, Canonization for Sainthood began in 2002

Author Quotes

It silences the ego with its clamorous demands, in order that it may hear the wishes of the divine heart. It uses our faculties, not to speculate on matters remote from God, but to stir up our will to conform more perfectly with his will. It cultivates a truly scientific attitude toward God as truth, freeing us from our prepossessions and our biases so that we may eliminate all wishful thinking from our minds. It eliminates from our lives the things that would hinder union with God and strengthens our desire that all the good things we do shall be done for His honor and glory.

Love is the key to the mystery. Love by its very nature is not selfish, but generous. It seeks not its own, but the good of others. The measure of love is not the pleasure it gives-that is the way the world judges it-but the joy and peace it can purchase for others.

No man hates God without first hating himself.

Our Generation is witnessing, whether it knows it or not, the conflict of two radically false concepts of liberty: a liberty of indifference which gives the individual the right to ignore society, and the liberty of necessity which gives the state the right to ignore the individual by absorbing him into a race or class and thus destroying his freedom of choice. Liberty of indifference forgets society, liberty of necessity forgets man. Liberty of indifference wrecks society by defining freedom as individual license; liberty of necessity wrecks humanity by defining freedom as the necessity which gives the dictator the right to absorb the person.

Skepticism is never certain of itself, being less a firm intellectual position than a pose to justify bad behavior.

The difference between the love of a man and the love of a woman is that a man will always give reasons for loving, but a woman gives no reasons for loving.

The mind has three operations: the formation of ideas, judgments and reasoning.

The soul cannot be seen in a biological laboratory, any more than pain can be seen on an operating table.

There remains the one standard that has not yet been universally used, namely, the choosing of candidates on moral grounds. A nation always gets the kind of politicians it deserves. When our moral standards are different, our legislation will be different. As long as the decent people refuse to believe that morality must manifest itself in every sphere of human activity, including the political, they will not meet the challenge of Marxism. Contemporary history proves that modern political leaders, devoid of a moral inspiration and relying solely on a mass basis (might makes right), proves ineffectual in time of crisis.

Two classes of people make up the world: those who have found God, and those who are looking for Him - thirsting, hungering, seeking! And the great sinners came closer to Him than the proud intellectuals! Pride swells and inflates the ego; gross sinners are depressed, deflated and empty. They, therefore, have room for God. God prefers a loving sinner to a loveless 'saint'. Love can be trained; pride cannot. The man who thinks that he knows will rarely find truth; the man who knows he is a miserable, unhappy sinner, like the woman at the well, is closer to peace, joy and salvation than he knows.

What is discovered may be abused, but that does not mean the discovery was evil.

Why can’t the modern mind see there is nothing new in Communism/Socialism? It is a groan of despair, not the revolution that starts a new age. It is the logical development of a civilization which for the last 400 years has been forgetting God. I’m beginning to believe there are only two classes of people: those who believe and those who want to believe. The new era into which we are entering is what might be called the religious phase of human history. But do not misunderstand: by religious we do not mean that men will turn to God, but rather that the indifference to the absolute which characterized the liberal phase of civilization will be succeeded by a passion for an absolute. From now on the struggle will be not for colonies and national rights, but for the souls of men . . . The conflict of the future is between the absolute who is the God-man and the absolute which is the man-God

It takes three to make love, not two: you, your spouse, and God. Without God people only succeed in bringing out the worst in one another. Lovers who have nothing else to do but love each other soon find there is nothing else. Without a central loyalty life is unfinished.

Love of enemies is actually the touchstone to prove whether our love is truly divine.

No soul ever fell away from God without giving up prayer. Prayer is that which establishes contact with Divine Power and opens the invisible resources of heaven. However dark the way, when we pray, temptation can never master us. The first step downward in the average soul is the giving up of the practice of prayer, the breaking of the circuit with divinity, and the proclamation of one’s owns self-sufficiency.

Our poor human heart is flawed: it is like a cake without the frosting: the first two acts of the theatre without the climax. Even its design is marred for a small piece is missing out of the side. That is why it remains so unsatisfied: it wants life and it gets death: it wants Truth and it has to settle for an education; it craves love and gets only intermittent euphoria’s with satieties. Samples, reflections and fractions are only tastes, not mouthfuls. A divine trick has been played on the human heart as if a violin teacher gave his pupil an instrument with one string missing. God kept a part of man's heart in Heaven, so that discontent would drive him back again to Him Who is Eternal Life, All-Knowing Truth and the Abiding Ecstasy of Love.

Skeptics always want miracles such as stepping down from the Cross, but never the greater miracle of forgiveness.

The egocentric is always frustrated, simply because the condition of self-perfection is self-surrender. There must be a willingness to die to the lower part of self, before there can be a birth to the nobler.

The more He loved those for whom He was the ransom, the more His anguish would increase, as it is the faults of friends rather than enemies which most disturb hearts!

The State exists for the person, not the person for the State, democracy is founded on this moral principle of the political order. Totalitarianism, on the contrary, in all its forms, believes the person exists for the State.

These are but a few specimens of philosophy which is no longer conscious of its own intrinsic worth, and which sees no higher mission in life for itself than applying the categories of the material to the spiritual, of the physical to the mental, and the spatio-temporal to the eternal.

Two psychoanalysts were walking past each other in the streets. One says 'hello!' The other says 'I wonder what he meant by that.'

What is Peace? Peace is the tranquility of order...body to sour and of man to God.

Why did Our Blessed Lord use bread and wine as the elements of this Memorial? First of all, because no two substances in nature better symbolize unity than bread and wine. As bread is made from a multiplicity of grains of wheat, and wine is made from a multiplicity of grapes, so the many who believe are one in Christ. Second, no two substances in nature have to suffer more to become what they are than bread and wine. Wheat has to pass through the rigors of winter, be ground beneath the Calvary of a mill, and then subjected to purging fire before it can become bread. Grapes in their turn must be subjected to the Gethsemane of a wine press and have their life crushed from them to become wine. Thus, do they symbolize the Passion and Sufferings of Christ, and the condition of Salvation, for Our Lord said unless we die to ourselves we cannot live in Him. A third reason is that there are no two substances in nature which have more traditionally nourished man than bread and wine. In bringing these elements to the altar, men are equivalently bringing themselves. When bread and wine are taken or consumed, they are changed into man's body and blood. But when He took bread and wine, He changed them into Himself.

It was not enough that the Son of God should come down from the heavens and appear as the Son of Man, for then He would have been only a great teacher and a great example, but not a Redeemer. It was more important for Him to fulfill the purpose of the coming, to redeem man from sin while in the likeness of human flesh. Teachers change men by their lives; Our Blessed Lord would change men by His death. The poison of hate, sensuality, and envy which is in the hearts of men could not be healed simply by wise exhortations and social reforms. The wages of sin is death, and therefore it was to be by death that sin would be atoned for.

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Sheen, fully Archbishop Fulton John Sheen
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American Roman Catholic Archbishop, Canonization for Sainthood began in 2002