Wednesday, January 24, 2007

His Laws in Our Hearts January 24

Memorial of Saint Francis de Sales, bishop and doctor of the Church <>

The holy Spirit also testifies to us, for after saying: "This is the covenant I will establish with them after those days," says the Lord: “I will put my laws in their hearts, and I will write them upon their minds," he also says: "Their sins and their evildoing I will remember no more." (Hebrews 10:15-18)

The Lord has sworn and will not waver: “Like Melchizedek you are a priest forever.” (Psalm 110:4)

<>“The sower sows the word.” (Mark 4:14)


Lord, help me find the words to sow among my friends and those I encounter throughout the day. Let me remember Your laws in all I say and do and think and be mindful that to others, I am your minister.


<>Today, we reflect on St. Francis de Sales, bishop of Geneva and doctor of the Church. Born in France in 1567 and became a priest during the time of the Protestant reformation. Francis had his shortcomings; he dearly valued his curly gold hair that was cut off at his ordination, and some complained he was conceited and controlling. Yet, he did not let this whispering get in the way of his work. He began an expedition to neighboring Switzerland with a goal of bringing the 60,000 Calvinists back to Catholicism, according to He received no money from his diocese or his wealthy father. He went with only his cousin, who left after three years when they had failed to make a single convert. But Francis plodded along. He became the first known author of religious tracts, copying his sermons by hand and putting them under people’s doors. By the time he came home, he had brought 40,000 people back to Catholicism.

For Francis, prayer was a key to God’s love. He advised: “Retire at various times into the solitude of your own heart, even while outwardly engaged in discussions or transactions with others, and talk to God. But just as today’s Psalm reminds us that we are “priests forever,” Francis counseled us to be mindful in our interactions with others: “To be an angel in prayer and a beast in one’s relations with people is to go lame in both legs.”


Make a friend. Be a friend. Bring that friend to Christ. We pledged to do it in the Fourth Day. Make a special effort today in honor of St. Francis de Sales to use the Lord’s laws in our hearts and minds to reach out to someone who can use that love. Sow the word in your speech and your behavior. There will be a change…maybe not today or tomorrow or even this year, but there will be a change, in the other person and in you. Remember, “Like Melchizedek you are a priest forever.”

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