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Two new Saints on Divine Mercy Sunday! The Church prepares for the canonization of St. John XXIII and St. John Paul II. As Visitation Sisters, we recognize the work of our founder, St. Francis de Sales present in the spiritual lives of these two popes!
As a seminarian, John XXIII chose St. Francis as his patron saint, and strove to model his life after him. He wrote in his autobiography “Journal of a Soul” on St. Francis de Sales’ feast day, January 29, 1903:
“Today was a perfect feast; I spent it in the company of St Francis de Sales, my gentlest of saints. What a magnificent figure of a man, priest and Bishop! If I were like him, I would not mind even if they were to make me Pope! I love to let my thoughts dwell on him,on his goodness and on his teaching. I have read his life so many times! His counsels are so acceptable to my heart. By the light of his example I feel more inclined to humility, gentleness and calm. My life, so the Lord tells me, must be a perfect copy of that of St Francis de Sales if I wish to bear good fruits.”
“Doctor of love, Saint Francis de Sales has unceasingly emphasized the lively source of the covenant of God with man: God loves us, God accompanies us at each stage of life, with a patient and faithful love; God puts in us His desire for what is good; an attraction towards what is beautiful and good.
“…Francis de Sales was tireless in showing his brothers and sisters the patience and tenderness of God ready to pardon, to save. He does not cease to transmit the Good News of the Annunciation: the Son of the Most High born of Mary comes to be united to humanity. In a distraught world, the presence of Jesus reopens the ‘wounds of love’, cures distressed hearts, offers a covenant of pardon and of renewal.”
In word and deed, these two popes imitated St. Francis de Sales, and by doing so, imitated Christ, who shone through him! To prepare for Sunday’s chat, please read our article, “Bl. John XXIII, Bl. John Paul II & St Francis de Sales”.
In our Living Jesus Chat Room this Sunday, we will discuss these points:
- What does the canonization of these two popes mean to us a Catholics?
- Do we, like Pope John XXIII, choose a patron saint to imitate? What virtues have we learned from these saints?
- John Paul II called St. Francis “a man of great goodness and kindness, who knew how to express God’s mercy and patience to those who came to speak with him”. In what ways did Pope John Paul II’s life mirror that of St. Francis de Sales?
Sign up for our Chat Room
Come to our Living Jesus Chat Room, 7:30 PM to 8:30 PM Eastern Time U.S. this Sunday. Sign up here and get your own username, or just come on Sunday and sign in as a guest. Seats are limited so, come on time.