A Year with the Saints – 25 May


Humble mildness is the virtue of virtues which Our Lord has recommended to us, and therefore we ought to practice it everywhere and always. Evil is to be shunned, but peaceably. Good is to be done, but with suavity. Take this for your rule: Do what you see can be done with charity, and what cannot be done without disturbance, leave undone. In short, peace and tranquillity of heart ought to be uppermost in all our actions, as olive oil floats above all liquors. – Saint Francis de Sales

We read of this Saint that he enjoyed an imperturbable peace of heart. He said himself, one day: “What is there that can possibly disturb our peace? If all the world were in confusion, I should not be troubled; for what is all the world worth in comparison with peace of heart?” His acts, too, corresponded to his words. Though he had the reform of the monasteries much at heart, he never used his authority to carry it out, knowing well that what is done by force is not lasting. So he preferred to fail in his plans rather than to execute them by violence and waited until time, or rather until God, should work those changes in hearts, that are above the power of any creature.

It was Saint Vincent de Paul’s maxim that though one ought to hold firmly to the end proposed in good undertakings, it was equally suitable to employ all possible amiability and sweetness in the means ordained to that end. For this is an imitation of the Divine Wisdom, which, though it reaches its ends strongly, yet disposes sweetly the means that lead to them.

MLA Citation