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The Spiritual Life and the Inverse Relationship between Influence and Affluence

—from Happy are You Poor: The Simple Life and Spiritual Freedom by Fr. Thomas DuBay

This love for elegance and for money has a peculiar deadening effect in the spiritual life. Saint Philip Neri used to remark that it is far easier to convert a lustful person to God than a covetous one.

—Ch. 6: Emptiness and Radical Readiness

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This is where factual poverty comes in. Few things in human life demonstrate as rapidly as one’s way of life what he is and what he really stands for. Talk is cheap; lived example is not. […] In our modern newspapers, magazines, and electronic media, we are deluged with hundreds of advertisements every day and with thousands of words… and consequently a few more words in a class presentation or a homily are not going to sway many people unless they hear those words in the context of a life selflessly given to God and his people. As someone well put it, there is more influence with less affluence.

—Ch. 8: Apostolic Credibility

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