Coat of arms of St Francis de Sales
St Francis de Sales is a great saint. Some quotations give a flavour of his gentle spirituality.
There are no galley-slaves in the royal vessel of divine love—every man works his oar voluntarily!
You learn to speak by speaking, to study by studying, to run by running, to work by working ; and just so you learn to love God and man by loving. All those who think to learn in any other way deceive themselves.
Have patience with every one, but especially with yourself. (How very 12 step!)
Quoted by Bishop Jean-Pierre Camus in The Spirit of Saint Francis de Sales.
I like this from his "Introduction to the Devout Life":
"I say that devotion must be practised in different ways by the nobleman and by the working man, by the servant and by the prince, by the widow, by the unmarried girl and by the married woman. But even this distinction is not sufficient; for the practice of devotion must be adapted to the strength, to the occupation and to the duties of each one in particular.
Moreover, just as every sort of gem, cast in honey, becomes brighter and more sparkling, each according to its colour, so each person becomes more acceptable and fitting in his own vocation when he sets his vocation in the context of devotion. Through devotion your family cares become more peaceful, mutual love between husband and wife becomes more sincere, the service we owe to the prince becomes more faithful, and our work, no matter what it is, becomes more pleasant and agreeable."
Grant, Lord, that in the service of our fellow-men
we may always reflect your own gentleness and love,
and so imitate Saint Francis de Sales,
whom you made all things to all men for the saving of souls.
through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God for ever and ever. Amen.
St Francis de Sales, pray for us.