Novena to St Francis de Sales
Day EIGHT – 22 January
“One of the greatest proofs of love that Jesus displayed on the cross was putting up with the imperfections of His neighbour. There He showed us that He has a heart that loves us tenderly and watches over us kindly. He even showed His love for those who put Him to death. In those dire moments the Saviour expressed thoughts of love even for his executioners, pardoning them in the very act of sinning! How petty-minded we are when we cannot bring ourselves to forget some injury received, even after a long time! Whoever sincerely pardons another calls down abundant blessings and perfectly imitates Christ.” (St Francis de Sales Spiritual Treatises IV; O. VI, pp. 65-66)
O blessed Francis de Sales,
who on earth did excel in a life of virtue,
especially in the love of God and neighbour,
I earnestly ask you to take me under your compassionate care and protection.
Obtain for me conversion of mind and heart.
Grant that all people, especially
(names of those whom you wish to include)
may experience the depth of God’s redeeming and healing love.
Teach me to fix my eyes on the things of heaven
even as I walk each day with my feet planted firmly on the earth.
Help me, through the practice of virtue and the pursuit of devotion,
to avoid anything that would otherwise cause me to stumble
in my attempt to follow Christ and to be an instrument of the Holy Spirit.
Encouraged by your prayers and example,
help me to live fully my sacred dignity with the hope of experiencing my sacred destiny: eternal life with God. Receive also this particular need or concern that I now lift up in prayer
(mention your particular need).
O God, for the salvation of all,
You desired that St Francis de Sales—
preacher, missionary, confessor, bishop and founder—
should befriend many along the road to salvation.
Mercifully grant that we,
infused with the humility and gentleness of his charity,
guided by his wisdom and sharing in his spirit may experience eternal life.
We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen
St Francis de Sales, pray for us