St Francis de Sales


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a leader of the Counter-Reformation. Despite attractive offers of secular employment, he felt a strong vocation to holy orders; in 1593 he was ordained priest and made Provost of Geneva. He won many Calvinists to Catholicism. In 1599 he was nominated Coadjutor-Bishop of Geneva, but was not consecrated until he succeeded to the see in 1602. He met St Jane Frances de Chantal in 1604, and with her founded the Visitation Order in 1610. His most famous works, the Introduction to the Devout Life (1609) and the Treatise on the Love of God (1616; designed for those more advanced in the spiritual life) were adapted from instructions given to individuals. Feast day, 24 (formerly 27) Jan.

Subjects: Christianity.

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