St. Francis de Sales

St. Francis de Sales (1567-1622) was a prolific author who was once Bishop of Geneva, Switzerland.  He is best remembered for his wonderful books on the topic of spiritual direction and spiritual formation.  He has been called "the Gentleman Saint" on account of his patience and gentleness.

St.,Anna's,Cathedral,In,Belfast

Preserving Peace of Soul in Times of Trial

Nothing disturbs us so much as self-love and self-esteem. If our heart does not overflow with tender emotions, if our mind does not teem with sublime sentiments, if our soul is not inundated with exquisite sweetness, we are sad. If anything difficult is to be done, if any obstacle opposes our just designs, behold us…

Bergamo,-,January,26:,Death,Of,St.,Joseph,Paint,From

God Does Not Abandon Us at the Hour of Death

As a gentle mother, leading her little child with her, helps it to walk, carries it according as she sees necessity, allows it to make some steps by itself in places which are very smooth, and not at all dangerous, sometimes taking it by the hand and steadying it, sometimes lifting it up in her…

Vienna,,Austira,-,Juni,24,,2021:,The,Fresco,Of,Scene

The Mercy of God on the Return of a Sinner

“If sin abounds in malice to destroy, grace superabounds to repair.” -St. Francis de Sales The entrance of sin takes away life from the heart and from all its good works; the entrance of grace restores life to the heart and to all its good works.  A severe winter kills the plants of the field,…

Venice,,Italy,-,March,14,,2014:,Sacrificio,Di,Isacco,(abraham

We Should Abandon Ourselves to God in Life and in Death

Among the praises given by the saints to Abraham, St. Paul mentions this above every other, that he believed, hoping against all hope. God has promised to multiply his posterity as the stars of heaven, and as the sand of the seashore; and, notwithstanding, gave him an order to sacrifice his only son. Yet Abraham…

The,Last,Supper,,Jesus,The,Statue,Of,A,Fresco,Painting

Love of Jesus for Sinners

Our Lord, the great and excellent physician of our infirmities, announced everywhere, before coming into this world, both His arrival and the maladies He would cure; sometimes by His prophets: “I will bind up that which was broken and I will comfort that which was weak.  The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me; to…

Valenciennes,,France.,2017/9/14.,Saint,Eligius,(also,Eloy,,Eloi,Or,Loye)

To Attain Perfection We Must Endure Our Imperfection

The feast of the Purification has no octave; it should continue our whole life. We must have our mind settled on two points; one, to expect the growth of weeds in our garden; the other, to have courage to witness their removal, and to lend a hand ourselves. For self-love will not die as long…

The,Crucifixion,,By,Pietro,Lorenzetti,,1340s,,Italian,Renaissance,Painting,,Tempera,

Sermon for Good Friday on the Passion of Christ

Sermon for Good Friday, March 25, 1622, concerning the brass serpent which saved the Israelites, the sinlessness of Christ, the manner in which He redeemed us, the two natures of Christ and our three “natures,” Our Lord as Savior, how our salvation comes from looking upon our Savior, Our Lord’s seven last words, His prayer…

The,Historic,Cloisters,Of,Glasgow,University.,Panorama,Of,The,Exterior

The Excellence of Abandonment to God

Abandonment is the virtue of virtues; it is the cream of charity, the fragrance of humility, the sweetness of patience, and the fruit of perseverance.  Great is this virtue, and worthy of being practiced by the beloved children of God. “My Father,” says our good Savior on the cross, “into Thy hands I commend my…

Rome,,Italy,-,August,31,,2021:,The,Painting,Of,St.

Lenten Meditation on Eternal Happiness by St. Francis de Sales

Sermon for the Second Sunday of Lent, February 20, 1622, concerning our inability to comprehend eternal happiness, the ability of the soul in Heaven to use its faculties to understand clearly and to love ardently, the soul’s joy in heavenly conversations with angels, saints, Our Lady, Our Lord, and with the Most Holy Trinity, the…

Prague,,Czech,Republic,-,October,13,,2018:,The,Fresco,Of

St. Francis de Sales Sermon for Ash Wednesday

Sermon for Ash Wednesday, February 9, 1622, concerning the spiritual fruits of fasting and the conditions which make fasting pleasing to God: fasting universally, that is, with all the senses and with the understanding, memory, and the appetites of the will; how completely the primitive Christians fasted, fasting through humility rather than through vanity, fasting…

Versailles,Paris,,France,-,April,18,:,Ceiling,Painting,In

Mourning Those Whom We Have Lost

“Raise up your eyes often to Heaven; and see that this life is only a passage to eternity.” -St. Francis de Sales If we lose our parents and friends, we ought not to be too much distressed; for there is no reason in the world why we should desire those whom we love to remain…

Jerusalem,,Israel,-,March,5,,2015:,The,Paint,Of,Saint

The Excellence of Abandonment to God

Abandonment is the virtue of virtues; it is the cream of charity, the fragrance of humility, the sweetness of patience, and the fruit of perseverance.  Great is this virtue, and worthy of being practiced by the beloved children of God. “My Father,” says our good Savior on the cross, “into Thy hands I commend my…

Catania,,Italy,-,April,8,,2018:,The,Painting,Of,St.

We Should Draw Profit from Our Faults

The faults and infidelities of which we are guilty every day should indeed bring us shame and confusion, when we approach Our Lord; and thus we read of great saints, like St. Catherine of Siena, and St. Teresa, that, when they had fallen into any fault, they experienced much confusion.  Hence it is very reasonable,…

Turin,,Italy,-,March,13,,2017:,The,Detail,Of,Painting

Christmas Midnight Mass Sermon by St. Francis de Sales

Below is an inspiring sermon delivered by Saint Francis de Sales for Midnight Mass, December 25, 1622.   Highlights include: The great Christian feasts in the early Church and their observances The Incarnation as God’s end in creating the world The two births of the Word, eternal and temporal The two natures of the Word made…

Catania,,Italy,-,April,7,,2018:,The,Painting,Of,Nativity

Mystical Aspects of the Mystery of Christmas

Below is an excerpt from a brief, but interesting sermon that was delivered by Saint Francis de Sales to a convent of nuns on Christmas Eve in the year 1614.  These nuns were members of the Congregation of the Oblates of the Visitation; an order founded by him. The sermon addresses Christ the Savior as…