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St Francis De Sales

Francis De Sales was born on 21st august 1567 at thorens near Annecy in France. He was the eldest of the thirteen children in the family. His father, Francois de Boisy and mother, Francoise de Siannas led exemplary Christian life. Between the ages of three and five he received his first Christian formation from his mother and Francoise Duret was his first teacher. From 1573 to 1575 Francis was educated at La Roche and had his further education in Annecy between 1575 and 1578. During this period he began to show astonishing curiosity about the mystery of faith which later shaped his vocation to priesthood. He had his college studies in Paris from 1582. His father wanted him to follow a career in the service of the state, therefore in 1585 he was sent to the University of Padua for the study of law. In 1591 he received his doctorate in both civil and cannon law. Turning down his father’s plan to make him senator and proposal for marriage, Francis pursed his priesthood studies and in 1593 he was ordained priest. Francis de Sales undertook the difficult mission to work among the Calvinists in the district of Chablis which is one of the eight states of Savoy in 1594. He was consecrated Bishop of Geneva on 8th December 1602. As a bishop he cared for both the rich and the poor, yet with a special preference for the poor. He bore within himself the spirit of Christian humanism. During his life time he preached more than 4000 sermons. The most known books of St. Francis de Sales are, Introduction to devote life and Treatise of love of God. Both are hailed as spiritual classics.

He passed away at the age of fifty-five of cerebral hemorrage at Lyons on 28th December, 1622. On 28th decembr, 1661 he was beatified by Pope Alexander VI and was canonized on 19th November 1877 by pope Pius IX. Pius IX proclaimed him as the Heavenly patron of all the writers, on January 26, 1923.St. Francis de Sales is the apostle of Chablais, the gentleman saint, a Doctor of the church and the patron of writers. Various religious congregations have been founded under the patronage of St.Francis de Sales. And he is the heavenly patron of the Missionaries of St. Francis de Sales also known as Fransalians.