Today we celebrate the Feast of Saint Francis de Sales, a 16th century Bishop of Geneva, who is also designated as a Doctor of the Church. What better way to celebrate this man, then to discuss one of his masterpieces. I found Philothea, or An Introduction to a Devout Life to be a gem!
We start with the title. “Philothea” translates to love of the study of God. How better to study God than by trying to emulate Him via living a devout life. How does one go about living a devout life? By embracing virtue and incorporating said virtue into the fabric of one’s life.
Saint Francis de Sales, A Master of Virtue
In Philothea or An Introduction to a Devout Life, Saint Francis de Sales does a masterful job of setting the stage by counseling us in understanding a desire for a devout life. He then instructs us on our approach to God in prayer and through the sacraments. Then, de Sales devotes an entire part of the book to the practice of virtue. He places special emphasis on dealing with temptation. Saint Francis de Sales concludes his book with an entire part devoted to the renewal of the soul and the confirmation of the devotion.
Although written in the early 17th century, this book is extremely easy to read and digest. The short chapters come across as a series of homilies, written for the common man to easily understand. Saint Francis de Sales’ writing style is filled with compassion and love, encouragement and hope; hope that we too, can live a devout life! This book has always been on my recommended reading list for anyone who wants to learn more about virtue. I use this book as my “go-to” guide when seeking advice. If you would like to learn more about incorporating virtue into your life, then click here to get your copy today!
If you would like to purchase an autographed copy of my book, Adventures of Faith, Hope and Charity: Finding Patience, then click here.