Father Bruno Lanteri was the founder of the Oblates of the Virgin Mary, the order that Fr. Timothy Gallagher, O.M.V. belongs to. One of the charisms of this order is fostering conversion to God through the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola. Fr. Gallagher has recently written a biography of the life of Fr. Lanteri entitled, “Begin Again.” The following is an excerpt of spiritual direction given by Fr. Lanteri to Clementina Celebrini in 1817:
“Forgive me if I have not replied earlier to your letter, since I could not. I have done what you asked and you need not be anxious. You would like to live already in heaven where happy events are not followed by trials but you must be patient since you must still remain here on earth and suffer with patience the trials necessary to enter heaven.
“If you want peace in this life, you must, first of all, decide to accommodate yourself to circumstances and not demand that circumstances accommodate themselves to you. You must, secondly, strive to practice uniformity of your will with God’s. It is he who disposes everything, arranges everything, and permits all that takes place. We need only seek and follow his fatherly design, which is always to provide us opportunities for practicing different virtues, at times one, at times another, so that he will have something for which to reward us.
“I have noticed in your letters that you often turn in on yourself. Try to watch for this and to focus less on yourself, but to serve God with great simplicity. Instead of turning in on yourself, lift your gaze often with peace and love to God, to his lovable will, to his adorable providence. Tell him that, regardless of whether you are good or bad, you want to be totally his and that it is his to make you become better. Cast also upon him all your concerns about your children and your husband. The more you trust him, the greater will be his care for you.”