University of Notre Dame

The Friendship of Christ


Robert Hugh Benson

Longmans, Green, and Co.

Fourth Avenue & 30th Street, New York

London, Bombay, and Calcutta

Nihil Obstat
Remigius Lafort, D.D.

+ John Cardinal Farley
Archbishop of New York.

New York
February 28, 1912.

The following pages contain in an abbreviated form sermons preached in Rome in the Church of St. Silvestro-in-Capite, during the year of 1911. Some of them were also preached in the Carmelite Church in Kensington in 1910.


Part I. Christ in the Interior Soul

I. The Friendship of Christ. [General] Gen. ii: 18
II. The Friendship of Christ. [Interior] Gen. ii: 18
III. The Purgative Way. Psalm l: 4
IV. The Illuminative Way. Psalm xvii: 29

Part II. Christ in the Exterior

V. Christ in the Eucharist. John vi: 35
VI. Christ in the Church. John xv: 5
VII. Christ in the Priest. John i: 17
VIII. Christ in the Saint. Matthew v: 14
IX. Christ in the Sinner. Luke xv: 2
X. Christ in the Average Man. Matthew xxv: 40
XI. Christ in the Sufferer. Colossians i: 24

Part III. Christ in His Historical Life

XII. Christ Our Friend Crucified [The Seven Words]
XIII. Christ Our Friend Vindicated [Easter Day] John xx: 17


From an old manuscript.

Let me tell you how I made His acquaintance.
I had heard much of Him, but took no heed.
He sent daily gifts and presents, but I never thanked Him.
He often seemed to want my friendship, but I remained cold.
I was homeless, and wretched, and starving and in peril every hour; and He offered me shelter and comfort and food and safety; but I was ungrateful still.
At last He crossed my path and with tears in His eyes He besought me saying, Come and abide with me.

Let me tell you how he treats me now.
He supplies all my wants.
He gives me more than I dare ask.
He anticipates my every need.
He begs me to ask for more.
He never reminds me of my past ingratitude.
He never rebukes me for my past follies.

Let me tell you further what I think of Him.
He is as good as He is great.
His love is as ardent as it is true.
He is as lavish of His promises as He is faithful in keeping them.
He is as jealous of my love as He is deserving of it.
I am in all things His debtor, but He bids me call Him Friend.

<< ======= >>