A Year with the Saints – 29 March


The true and only remedy for this evil is to make little account of what suggests itself to our mind. When asked for our opinion, let us give it frankly, but with indifference as to whether or not it be accepted or approved, and let us be careful to follow the judgment of others rather than our own, whenever it can be lawfully done. – Saint Francis de Sales

It is narrated in the Lives of the Fathers that when the Abbot John, who was very celebrated for holiness, was about to die, his disciples begged him to leave them some good advice for acquiring perfection. He replied to them: “This is all is I can tell you: I have labored not according to my own judgment, but according to the judgment of others; nor have I ever commanded another to do anything, without having first done it myself.”

Saint Jane Frances de Chantal had a mind at once lofty, and quick to reach the point at which it aimed. But for all this, when she was asked for advice in important affairs, she never trusted wholly to the knowledge she had acquired by long experience; but besides having recourse to God in prayer, she wished to consult with her spiritual fathers and with persons acquainted with those affairs. She would then express her own sentiments in this way: “This is my opinion, but take in addition the advice of someone wiser and more judicious.”

Saint Vincent Ferrer, in matters relating to the direction and government of that Order of which he was the head, as a general thing, followed the wishes and opinions of his companions rather than his own.

MLA Citation