from the annals of history unto our current day
The Spiritual Meditations of St. Francis de Sales
from the book, 'Introduction to the Devout Life'
first written for St. Jane Frances de Chantal and now offered to all
1. PLACE yourself in the Presence of God. 2. Invoke His Aid.
1. Represent to yourself a lovely calm night, when the heavens are bright
with innumerable stars: add to the beauty of such a night the utmost beauty
of a glorious summer's day, the sun's brightness not hindering the clear
shining of moon or stars, and then be sure that it all falls immeasurably
short of the glory of Paradise. O bright and blessed country, O sweet and
2. Consider the beauty and perfection of the countless inhabitants of that
blessed country; the millions and millions of angels, Cherubim and Seraphim;
the glorious company of Apostles, martyrs, confessors, virgins, and saints.
O blessed company, any one single member of which surpasses all the glory of
this world, what will it be to behold them all, to sing with them the sweet
Song of the Lamb? They rejoice with a perpetual joy, they share a bliss
unspeakable, and unchangeable delights.
3. Consider how they enjoy the Presence of God, Who fills them with the
richness of His Vision, which is a perfect ocean of delight; the joy of
being for ever united to their Head. They are like happy birds, hovering and
singing for ever within the atmosphere of divinity, which fills them with
inconceivable pleasures. There each one vies without jealousy in singing the
praises of the Creator. Blessed art Thou for ever, O Dear and Precious Lord
and Redeemer, Who dost so freely give us of Thine Own Glory, they cry; and
He in His turn pours out His ceaseless Blessing on His Saints. Blessed are
ye, Mine own for ever, who have served Me faithfully, and with a good
Affections and Resolutions
1. Admire and rejoice in the Heavenly Country; the glorious and blessed New
2. Reprove the coldness of your own heart for having hitherto so little
sought after that glorious abode. Why have I so long lingered indifferent to
the eternal happiness set before me? Woe is me that, for the sake of poor
savourless earthly things, I have so often forgotten those heavenly
delights. How could I neglect such real treasures for mere vain and
contemptible earthly matters?
3. Aspire earnestly after that blessed abode. Forasmuch, O Dear Lord, as
Thou hast been pleased to turn my feet into Thy ways, never will I again
look back. Go forth, my soul, towards thy promised rest, journey unweariedly
to that hoped-for land; wherefore shouldest thou tarry in Egypt?
4. Resolve to give up such and such things, which hinder you on the way, and
to do such others as will help you thitherwards.
Give thanks, offer, pray.
Return to the Seventh Meditation . . .
Proceed to the Ninth Meditation