The glory of God in Father Beyzym’s life
The consequent of Father Beyzym’s monastic formation was the focusing of all his life at the, beloved above all, glory of God, and the will that it should be the greater glory of His - maior Dei gloria. The motto of the Society of Jesus is: “All for the greater glory of God” (Omnia ad maiorem Dei gloriam). It became the motto of his life, prayer and work. In accordance with the spirit of St. Ignatius Loyola Father Beyzym always connected the greater glory of God with the common good of his neighbour (cf. Constitutions, 258, 623). “Everything that is for the lepers is for the greater glory of God”, - he wrote to Father Apoloniusz Kraupa after arriving at Madagascar.
Work, service and suffering for the greater glory of God
From the very beginning of his service to the lepers Father Beyzym sought and wished for the greater glory of God and the greater benefit for the sick entrusted to his care. He believed that even his letters, which he sent from Madagascar to Father Czerminski and which were published in “The Catholic Missions”, contributed to the greater glory of God and good of others. That was the reason he wrote and sent them. He wrote to the Mother Prioress from Lobzow Carmel that he tried to live and work longer for the greater glory of God and good of his lepers. He looked at everything and assessed everything in the light of the greater glory of God. He tried to fight misery and hunger among his lepers, as it was God’s will and good of his neighbours for who he took the responsibility. He saw the glory of God in that. He wanted to contribute to the glory of God not only by his work and service, but by his suffering. He asked Mary to let him suffer for the greater glory of Her Son. He also asked Our Lord Jesus to help him in everything that was for His greater glory.
Why did Father Beyzym trust Our Lady so implicitly? Because She knew better what was for the glory of God, for His greater glory and for the good of people. He commended his hardships into Her hands – for the greater glory of God. He was deeply convinced that the leprosarium in Marana would be constructed with Our Holy Mother’s help and there would be the glory of God there, as Mary was always the head of everything that was for His greater glory. Through Mary everything was aimed at the greater glory of Her Son and for the good, redeemed by His Blood. He often asked Lobzow Carmelites for the intercession of the Blessed Mother on his behalf, so he could work for the greater glory of God and for Her glory, as the glory of Mary always turned into the glory of God.
He humbly accused himself that, although in accordance with the Institute of the Society of Jesus he was to do everything for the greater glory of God, he did nothing for His glory.
He wrote to Father Czerminski about his difficulties and troubles: “I do not care about those difficulties; on the contrary, I thank God and His Blessed Mother, who I thank day and night, for them. It makes me certain that there will be the greater glory of God and good for the souls of this leprosarium, if it, as all the other works of God, is marked with a cross”. If the work was marked with a cross, it was the sign that it was for the greater glory of God.
Help for souls who perish
He worked hard, he enjoyed the toil and fatigue, because he knew that “that little I sometimes manage to accomplish, I do for the glory of God and good of my suffering brothers”. All the difficulties that he experienced constructing the leprosarium, he sacrificed for the greater glory of God. Father Beyzym soon became convinced that his work for the convicts of Sakhalin would be even for the greater glory of God. He asked his Superiors to send him on a mission to Sakhalin and the only reason for his decision was that he saw Ignatian magis – greater glory of God, greater help for perishing souls in it.
The sin is against the glory of God. The lack of the leprosarium made the fight with the sin difficult. Father Beyzym thought that the hospital with the sex separation would be for the greater glory of God. Despite continuing difficulties, he did not surrender. He proceeded with his intention to build a proper hospital for the good of bodies and protection of souls from sins.
He persistently asked for the albums of prints and illustrations for his protégées to have them busy and divert them from idleness and temptation to sin. He was convinced that this way he would prevent many sins, thus contributing to the greater glory of God.
In the spirit of St. Ignatius Contemplation to gain love, Father Beyzym saw, praised and loved God in everything. He saw the manifestation of God the Creator’s glory in the power of the thunderstorm or other natural phenomena, beautiful, but sometimes awesome. He humbled himself before Him. What was the goal of the Carmelites monasteries in Father’s opinion? “Carmels should be for the greater glory of God and for the sake of this wretched world”. He painstakingly prepared eight-day retreats for the Sisters of St. Joseph of Cluny, who worked in the leprosarium. “It costs me a little work, as I need to use a dictionary, but thanks God; I can do at least something for the greater glory of His”.
Prepared for everything
He missed the country, the language, the school in Chyriv, but he professed the principle: “Ibi patria, ubi maior Dei gloria” (The homeland is where the greater glory of God is). He wrote to Mother Ksawera that he missed his homeland, but he did not want to return, because “I did nothing for the greater glory of God and for the good of souls yet”.
He wrote to his trusted friends (Father Kraupa, Father Czerminski) that he was prepared for everything, even for death, for the greater glory of God and for the good of the lepers. Father Assistant Wlodzimierz Ledochowski wrote to Father Czerminski with regard to Father Beyzym’s difficult Sakhalin mission and evaluating his life and intentions: “I have never had any doubt that Father Beyzym seeks only the greater glory of God, good and souls’ salvation”.
Therefore, Father Beyzym could be rightly regarded as a man, who completely and zealously subjected himself to the glory of God; who lived and worked to the end for the greater glory of his beloved God and for the greater good of his beloved “black birds” in every aspect of the good: physical and spiritual.
Fr Mieczyslaw Bednarz SJ