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Souls, souls!

Most Reverend Father,

May the peace of Our Lord Jesus Christ be always with us!

I would like to come and see your Excellency in person, but, as it is not possible, I am confident in your goodness to be able to ask you to listen to me favorably even from far away.

I will be grateful to your Excellency if you can help me in the work of seeking out holy vocations.

It is in fact about this that I am hoping to interest you in the Lord: I am coming to seek vocations.

And I am especially looking for young men who show a desire to become priests or helping brothers, and who would be prepared, with the agreement of their families, to join this new-born Congregation of the Sons of Divine Providence, which, as it is blessed by the Vicar of Jesus Christ and the Bishops, will soon be able to pitch its tents far beyond Italy: to Rhodes, to Palestine, to Poland, to Uruguay, to Brazil and to Argentina.

It is prepared to accept poor boys, as long as they give good hope for the Church. And it will educate them, with the help of God, in the doctrine of Jesus Christ, to a firm and ardent eucharistic piety, a burning spirit of charity and apostolate, helping them with special care in their studies and religious formation.

“The harvest is great, but the laborers are few.”

Brothers, let us provide laborers, good laborers, for the vast fields of faith and charity! ….

“Many are called to the service of the altar,” wrote that great Servant of God, Fr.Rua, but many are lost, as they cannot always be helped.

If, therefore, Your Excellency has discovered, among the good boys who go to Church, some poor young boy, perhaps a little left out of things, but with the openness of innocence and the signs of a vocation to the service of God, I take the liberty of humbly asking you to send him to me. ….

The vocations of poor boys to the Priesthood are, after the love of the Pope and the Church, my dearest ideal, the sacred love of my life. …

What a long road I have walked for the vocations of poor boys! I have climbed so many stairs: I have knocked on so many doors! And God brought me onward like His slave.

I have undergone hunger, thirst, and most painful humiliations: yet they seemed like little treats from God! I have also incurred many debts; but Divine Providence has never let me go bankrupt.

And if Jesus were to grant it, I would consider it a great grace if, for vocations, I could go begging bread right up to the end of my life.

Souls and Souls! I am looking for souls! I am trying, with divine help and your Excellency’s also, to do a job of resuscitation of good Religious, of holy Priests, of Apostles.

Who would refuse to help me? Do me this charity for the love of God, the Blessed One!

I trust in Our Lord and in the intelligent goodness and zeal of your Excellency. For what you will do, may God bless you with a great blessing! I will always pray for you, and I promise always to be grateful to you, especially at the Altar.


Letter of Don Orione, from Tortona, August 15, 1927