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Sts. Francis de Sales and Vincent de Paul

Sts. Francis de Sales and Vincent de Paul by Br. Mickey McGrath, OSFS

Artist Narrative:

The Prayer of St. Francis de Sales
Be at Peace
Do not look forward in fear to the changes of life;
rather look to them with full hope as they arise.
God, whose very own you are,
will deliver you from out of them.
He has kept you hitherto,
and He will lead you safely through all things;
and when you cannot stand it,
God will bury you in his arms.
Do not fear what may happen tomorrow;
the same everlasting Father who cares for you today
will take care of you then and every day.
He will either shield you from suffering,
or will give you unfailing strength to bear it.
Be at peace,
and put aside all anxious thoughts and imagination.

Their feast days are January 24 and September 27.

Art Collection: 
McGrath collection: 
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Saint Francis de Sales:

Was born in a castle to a well-placed family, his parents intended that he become a lawyer, enter politics, and carry on the family line and power. He studied at La Roche, Annecy, Clermont College in Paris, and law at the University of Padua. Doctor of Law. He returned home, and found a position as Senate advocate.

It was at this point that he received a message telling him to "Leave all and follow Me." He took this as a call to the priesthood, a move his family fiercely opposed. However, he pursued a devoted prayer life, and his gentle ways won over the family.

Francis was a priest and Provost of the diocese of Geneva, Switzerland, a stronghold of Calvinists. He was a preacher, writer and spiritual director in the district of Chablais. His simple, clear explanations of Catholic doctrine, and his gentle way with everyone, brought many back to the Roman Church.

Francis became Bishop of Geneva at age 35. He traveled and evangelized throughout the Duchy of Savoy, working with children whenever he could. He was a friend of Saint Vincent de Paul. He helped found the Order of the Visitation with Saint Jane de Chantal. He was aprolific correspondent and a Doctor of the Church.

Saint Vincent de Paul:

Vincent was a peasant and a highly intelligent youth. He spent four years with Franciscan friars at Acqs getting an education. He was the tutor to children of a gentlemen of the town. He began divinity studies in 1596 at the University of Toulouse and became a priest at age 20. Vincent was taken captive by Turkish pirates to Tunis, and sold into slavery. He was freed in 1607 when he converted one of his owners to Christianity.

Vincent served as parish priest near Paris where he started organizations to help the poor, nurse the sick, find jobs for the unemployed, etc. He was the chaplain at the court of Henry IV of France. With Louise de Marillac, he founded the Congregation of the Daughters of Charity. He instituted the Congregation of Priests of the Mission (Lazarists). Vincent worked always for the poor, the enslaved, the abandoned, the ignored, the pariahs.