Today is the Feast Day of St. François de Laval
(1623 – 1708)
Born into an illustrious family, St. François de Laval (1623–1708) walked away from a life of wealth in order to dedicate his life to the service of the Lord. Eventually, he was ordained a bishop and appointed the apostolic vicar of New France in 1658. At the time of his arrival, Québec had barely 500 inhabitants and there were only about 2,200 French in all of Canada.
Fifteen years later, in 1674, he became the first bishop of Québec when it was made into a diocese, which, according to Most Reverend Paul-André Durocher, president of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, consisted of most of what is now Canada, much of upper New England and all the Mississippi Valley, extending even to the Rocky Mountains.
Despite the sheer size of his diocese, St. François established a parochial system and visited each parish, often either on foot, sometimes wearing snowshoes, or by canoe, in and out of season. He never missed a Mass or a day of fasting, even as his health began to decline. He is most noted for his work in defending the native population from exploitation, for his work with the poor and for his commitment to education (he founded both a major and minor seminary). Ultimately, he succumbed to an ulcer, which took his life on May 6, 1708. (Credit: FAITH Magazine)
The Spirit of God asks for a peaceful, collected heart, not a worried, drifting heart.
– St. François de Laval
St. Francis de Laval, pray for us.
Be not afraid! And may the peace of Christ be with you and your loved ones today and always. Holy Family pray for us. Amen.