Praying with St. Francis de Sales during Mary’s Month

We present thoughts for growing closer to our Blessed Mother from our Founder, St. Francis de Sales.

From the Month of Mary according to the Spirit of St. Francis de Sales, by Don Gaspar Gilli

May 13th


Our actions are like roses, which, though more pleasing when fresh, are yet sweeter and more agreeable when faded. Thus, although works performed with consolation are more pleasing to us ;yet if they be done in the state of aridity, they have a sweeter odour, higher value before God.St Francis de Sales

Ejaculation. I place all my confidence, after God, in you, O Mary, my dear Mother.

Practice. Bear patiently, and in a spirit of penance, all the contradictions you may meet with this day

May 12th

We ought always to have our eye fixed upon the Will of God alone, recognising it, and with all joy,or at least courage, following it carefully in all our actions. But even this is not enough ; we should also love this Will of God, whatever it may cost us.St. Francis of Sales.

Ejaculation. I place myself for the whole of my life under your protection, O Mother of my God ! O show that you are my true Mother !

Practice. Be very attentive in all your exercises of piety during the day.

May 11th

Ejaculation. Make me like unto you, O Mary,who were so sweet and humble of heart.
Practice. Make an act of external humility in union with Mary.

May 1oth

As the bee gathers from flowers the dew of heaven and the sweetest juice of the earth, forming it into honey and carrying it to its hive, so the Priest takes from the altar our Blessed Saviour(the true Son of God, Who descended like dew from heaven, and came forth from the Virgin Mary as a flower from the earth of our humanity), and places Him in your mouth, and He becomes to you a delicious and spiritual food. St. Francis of Sales.


Ejaculation. O Holy Virgin, help those who groan in misery !

Practice. Mortify self-love, by some act of obedience or meekness.


May 9th

The rose is the symbol of love and charity ;its petals are red, and formed like a heart. Such should be the actions of the spouses of Jesus Christ. They should have as many hearts as they have petals that is to say, hearts full of love, and like petals in the little esteem they should have oftheir actions. St. Francis of Sales.


Ejaculation. O Mother of God and my Mother,the confidence I place in you is to me a pledge of my eternal salvation.

Practice. Let all your prayers and actions this day be offered in suffrage for the holy souls in Purgatory.


May 8th

The Pilgrimage of St. Francis of Sales to Loreto.

St. Francis of Sales was always thinking of the honour of the Most Blessed Virgin, and had made a vow from his youth to visit the holy Chapel of Loreto. In his travels through Italy, made byorder of his father, his great desire was to fulfil the promise he had made to venerate the Most Holy Virgin in the Sanctuary where she had received the visit of the Angel and the sublime dignity of becoming the Mother of God, and he did so with wonderful piety. He was rapt in admiration in beholding those walls that had enclosed such wonders. He prayed motionless for a long time before the Altar of the Queen of Heaven, thanking her devoutly for all she had done for himself,exhorting her to continue her holy protection, and renewing his promise to imitate her angelic virtue of purity during his whole life. Ineffable were the graces and consolations that he then received ; his mind was illumined by celestial light, and his heart was inflamed with such ardent charity, that from that moment. nothing appeared to him impossible,when there was question of the glory of God and the salvation of souls.

Ejaculation. O Holy Virgin ! may I always remember you, and have recourse to you in all my necessities.

Practice. Visit the altar of Mary, either in the church or in your room, to obtain from her sorrow for your sins.

May 7th

It is not humility to acknowledge ourselves to be miserable, for this needs but a little understanding of our condition, but to wish and desire to be treated as such is true Christian humility. St.Francis of Sales.

Ejaculation. Most pure Virgin, pray for us.

Practice. In temptations against holy purity invoke Mary, Virgin and Mother.

May 6th

Holy prayer is a water of benediction, which refreshes the plants of our good desires and makes them flourish. It washes our souls from their imperfections, and extinguishes the fire of passion in our hearts. St. Francis of Sales.

Aspiration: We put ourselves under your powerful protection, O Holy Mother of God !

Practice. Recite to-day the Angelus with great fervour.


May 5th

It was on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception of Mary that this Saint was attacked by the first serious symptoms of her fatal illness. On the eve of the feast she was in the refectory, and after the blessing of the table she knelt down, and with her arms in the form of a cross repeated twice these words : O Mater Dei^ memento met. She then commented upon these words thus : Holy Mother of God, by your Immaculate Conception,remember me and assist me always, especially at the hour of my death. She remained for a longtime afterwards in the same posture, absorbed in profound recollection.The following day she was confined to her, bed to rise no more. Her illness increasing every hour, she knew that her end approached, and thought only of preparing herself to appear before God. She received the last Sacraments with striking fervour, and preserved her calmness and serenity amidst the tears and sobs of all the community. During her intense sufferings she was heard to address the following prayer to the Most Holy Virgin : O Mary, Mother of Grace, Mother of Mercy, defend me from the snares of the infernal enemy, and receive my soul into your hands at the moment of my death. She kept a picture of her Protectress always near her bed ; and when her speech failed she made great efforts to turn her eyes frequently towards this dear picture, and before she breathed her last asked to kiss it once more.


Aspiration: . Grant, O my God, that through Mary I may belong entirely to Jesus !


Practice. If you should meet with any contradiction during the day, maintain your peace.



May 4th

Most yellow flowers keep turned continually to the sun, but the sunflower turns not only its flowers

but also its leaves towards the great luminary. In like manner the elect turn the flower of their heartsthat is, their obedience to the commands of God s will.( St. Francis of Sales.)

Prayer:  O Mary ! be my guiding star.

Practice. Examine what has been your fidelity in following your vocation, and how its obligations have been fulfilled.

May 3rd

The Christian who abandons himself into the hand of God, lives for God alone. St. Francis de Sales.

Prayer of St. Gertrude to the Sacred Heart of Mary. O Immaculate Heart of Mary, I have nothing to offer you that is worthy of you ; yet how many thanks should I not render you for all the favours that you have obtained for me from the Heart of Jesus ! What reparation should I not offer you for my languor during Divine service !I would wish to render you love for love : the only good that I possess is the Sacred Heart of Jesus,which you have yourself given to me. I offer you,then, this treasure of infinite value I can do nothing more, and nothing less do you merit from Accept, then, this gift, which is so dear to you ; and nothing more do I desire except that you will deign to accept, also, my poor heart.Amen.

Ejaculation. Mother of Good Counsel, pray for me.

Practice. Make a sincere act of contrition for the time that you have spent away from God.

May 2nd

Mary was like a most beautiful flower, which diffuses its perfume from its very first budding.Flowers differ in their method of diffusing fragrance, as, for instance, roses and carnations.Roses smell sweeter in the morning before mid-day;but carnations and pinks shed a more pleasing scent in the evening. The glorious Virgin was like a most beautiful rose amongst thorns, and although never for an instant did she cease to diffuse an odour of surpassing sweetness, yet the fragrance of her infancy was the most acceptable to the Divine Majesty. St. Francis de Sales.

Aspiration: . Mary, Virgin and Mother ! make me a Saint.

Practice. Let all your actions this day be done in union with Jesus and Mary.

May 1st

I am firmly resolved to desire no other heart than that which shall be given me by this Mother of hearts, this Mother of holy love. O my God !how much do I desire not to lose sight, not even for an instant, of this gracious Star, during the whole course of my journey ! St. Francis de Sales.

Aspiration. Morning Star, pray for me.

Practice. Visit the altar of the Blessed Virgin,after having adored the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar.

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