Miniature Lives of the Saints – Saint Francis Solano

detail of a stained glass window of Saint Francis Solano; date unknown, artist unknown; Templo del Hospital, Acámbaro, Estado de Guanajuato, México; photographed on 22 September 2012 by Enrique López-Tamayo Biosca; swiped from Wikimedia CommonsArticle

Francis was born at Monsilia in Spain a.d. 1549. As a boy he hated quarrels, and was always putting an end to disputes. He once threw himself between two fighting playfellows, and bore their blows till he forced them to desist. On another occasion his earnest entreaties sheathed the swords of older combatants. At the age of twenty he entered the Franciscan Order in his native city. When the plague broke out, his devotion to the sufferers nearly cost him his life; on recovering he escaped the gratitude of the people by sailing for the American mission. His ship was wrecked at sea. During the disaster Francis found time to instruct and baptize many of the negroes on board. Some moments after, their half of the ship sank in the waves, the rest were saved. In Peru he was again an apostle of charity and peace; he stopped the duels and healed the feuds of the Spanish settlers, and taught them forbearance to the conquered race. With the gift of tongues he was understood at once by different Indian tribes, of whom thousands were baptized. A sermon of his so stirred the hearts of the dissolute inhabitants of Lima, that they clad themselves in mourning and did public penance. His zeal renewed the face ofthe land, and warmed it with the charity of Christ. But his own strength was worn out. With his favourite ejaculation, “Blessed be God!” he expired on the feast of his patron Saint Bonaventure, 1610.

The first degree of virtue is to keep peace with God; the second to keep peace with our neighbour; the third and most perfect is to make peace between those who are enemies, and to do this for the sake of Christ, who is our peace.

My object was to reconcile, and having succeeded in it I have suffered nought. – Saint Francis Solano

Some Indian tribes yet unconverted planned a massacre of the Christians of Socoton while engaged in the ceremonies of Holy Week. Hearing of their coming, Francis went forth filled with the Holy Ghost, and falling in with them preached to them with such moving words of Christ’s Passion, and exhorted them so earnestly to embrace His holy faith, that on that very day more than nine thousand were baptized, and many the same night took a severe discipline in honour of the Passion together with the Spanish Christians.

When the ways of a man shall please the Lord he will convert even his enemies to peace. – Proverbs 16:7

MLA Citation

  • Henry Sebastian Bowden. “Saint Francis Solano”. Miniature Lives of the Saints for Every Day of the Year, 1877. CatholicSaints.Info. 28 February 2015. Web. 20 February 2019. <>