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The gifts of the Holy Spirit: "Piety"

Piety makes us want what God wants

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Lord Have Mercy” (from the Greek Kyrie Eleison ). Why do we say this? What do we ask the Lord exactly? But what is piety then? It is not easy to give a definition to the term pity. The first thing that comes to our mind is that feeling of commiseration that we feel for the other, that form of pietism that we show to the other. If pity is addressed to us, we often reject it even with pride. " I don’t want anyone's pity!" : It’s the expression we often say, since it is always seen as a negative attitude,  but it is an obvious sign of our inability to love.

God's piety is the Holy Spirit. It is a gift of the Holy Spirit, of His love. When we say " Lord Have Mercy " we mean: " Lord, You are who You are, send us your Blowing, Your Spirit, and we will be renewed!" That is to have a heart of flesh, not a stone heart so that we too can love Him with His own love, the one that Jesus came to bring to us. To live as Jesus lived in relation to the Father, in the union of the Trinitarian family.

Considering its etymology, pity, from the Latin "pietas", denotes the affection and obedience that the believer has for God, the family love between father and children and therefore it has nothing to do with the negative meaning that is attributed to it.

It is a gift that concerns our identity and that identify us as children of God through His beloved Son, who came to teach us, to disclose our bond with our Creator, not as an imposition, but as a desire of our  heart. And since pity has its center in the heart, we are encouraged to look at God not only as the Creator but as our Father, a true provident and affectionate Father. Saint Paul wrote: God sent his Son….that we might receive adoption to sonship. Because you are his sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.”

In fact, tenderness is the basis of the relationship between father and children and vice versa. It is total trust in the person we know that she loves us and to whom we owe our gratitude. Pity is tenderness for God, to be in love with Him and to desire to glorify Him in all things... Thanks to Piety, the Christian not only seeks the consolations from God, but wants to keep Him company in His joy and His suffering for the sin of the world "(Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini).

Jesus explained to Luisa that all created things rejoiced and suffered with Him. They, animated by His Will, repeated His acts and kept company with their Creator. Jesus came upon earth not only to save man but to give him back the lost Will, which man, ungrateful, still rejects. This rejection of man wounded Jesus and invested all Creation that suffered with Him. All created things, with their moans, tears, sighs, and prayers, moved the Heavenly Father to pity.  And He, moved to tenderness by His own Will that moaned, surrendered the keys of Heaven and gave His Kingdom once again. But in order to be sure, He placed it in the Humanity of His Son .

The gift of piety makes us able to desire what God desires and to reach the typical confidence of family relationships, where respect is a sign of education and gratitude to the other, and where the heart, free from the hard feelings that tend to divide, (such as bitterness, anger, impatience), feeds feelings of understanding, tolerance, forgiveness, and makes us part of the mildness of the same Heart of Jesus.

This gift is the extension of the prayer that Jesus bequeathed to us: Our Father. This prayer is also the basis of the spirituality of the little daughter of the Divine Will. Jesus is the authentic example for the Christian: He incarnates trust, adoration of God the Father, even when God seems to be absent. Jesus teaches us that even when unruliness occurs in our life, the true Christian must not interrupt his bond with God, because his faith in the divine plan is firm, his foundation is in love "The Lord never disturbs the peace of His children except to give them  a greater one "(Saint Luigi Orione).

In the Old Testament we also find Job and Tobias, as examples of faithful people who were able to live their relationship with God, abandoning themselves to His Will.

And Jesus, in Luisa’s writings remarked this abandonment to the Will of the Father: Fiat voluntas tua sicut in caelo et in terra. The invocation Kyrie eleison is also translated as “Lord, have benevolence” where the word benevolence denotes that there is a will that aims at good, a “voluntas”, a voluntary spiritual attitude that engenders the desire to do good. And God wants to do good!

In fact, the gift of Piety, unlike the gift of understanding and of the counsel, acts on the will. The creature who, like Luisa, recognizes her existential poverty and the void that earthly things leave in her, uses her will only to always choose God! She totally abandons herself to Him, giving Him her life. She knows that God can only give her graces and support so that she, in turn, can be a support for others.

Our heart, by virtue of this admirable gift, and then of our love for God and filial relationship with Him, opens itself up to tenderness towards others. In this way, we consider them as brothers, as many children of the One Father, called to be part of the One Family of God that is the Church, and to work for them. How many times Luisa "reminded" Jesus that creatures are His own images and one thousand times she wanted to suffer for them. Her care towards them was due to her fraternal love that came from her love for Jesus. It was the same love of Jesus for the Father and for each of us, His brothers.

With the gift of Piety, the creature no longer lives for herself, but for God and others. She abandons all fears because she is certain she always has her hand in that of the Father, a good Father who does not deny her anything and with whom she walks.

Through this gift, the creature fills herself with enthusiasm and joy. She is always grateful to God, and recognizes His constant presence and an irrepressible and natural desire for prayer and adoration. The creature becomes sensible, but she remains humble. She acknowledges the almightiness of God. "My soul magnifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior; Because He has regarded the lowliness of His handmaid; For behold, henceforth all generations shall call me blessed; Because He who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is His name."

The Magnificat of Mary is an example of spontaneous prayer. It fully expresses the gift of Piety that the simple and humble soul asks God.

In addition, Jesus explained to Luisa that in the creation of the Sovereign Queen, God’s Love was not satisfied by the mere display, rather, It wanted to assume the attitude of piety, tenderness and compassion, so profound and intimate, as to be turned into tears for love of the creatures. This is why, as He pronounced His FIAT to create her and call her to life, He created forgiveness, mercy and reconciliation between God and humankind, and He deposited it in this celestial Creature, as the Administrator between His children and hers. Therefore, the Sovereign Lady possesses seas of forgiveness, mercy and piety, in which she can cover all human generations and  soften the hardest hearts.

So, we could say that the gift of Piety contains everything, it involves will,  action and feelings, and is the basis for all the other gifts. The souls who receive this gift are one thing with the Divine Will.

As Jesus told Luisa, they are the owners of His goods, they want what God wants. So, they don’t feels the need of piety and forgiveness  because they received everything.  And when Luisa asked Jesus to have mercy for His privations, Jesus, corrected her and explained to her that those requests belong to the soul that is not really in His Will. Therefore, He recommended not to go out of His Will and not think of herself, but of others, as she was already doing, otherwise she would impoverish herself and feel the need for everything.

Since we are children and not slaves, let’s continue to ask God for the gift of His Spirit to be joyful witnesses of His love and humble servants of our neighbor.


For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God.

The Spirit you received does not make you slaves,

so that you live in fear again;

rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship.

And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.”

(Romans 8:14-15)


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