Francis de Sales’s Introduction to the Devout Life has remained a uniquely accessible and relevant treasure of devotion for nearly four hundred years. As Bishop of Geneva in the first quarter of the seventeenth century, Francis de Sales saw to the spiritual needs of everyone from the poorest peasants to court ladies. The desire to be closer to God that he found in people from all levels of society led him to compile these instructions on how to live in Christ. Francis’s compassionate Introduction leads the reader through practical ways of attaining a devout life without renouncing the world and offers prayers and meditations to strengthen devotion in the face of temptation and hardship.
About the Author
Francis de Sales (1567-1622) was born into a privileged family and studied law before abandoning his prospects for the religious life. He was appointed Provost of Geneva, a center of Calvinism. With his quick mind and the persuasive pamphlets that he wrote, he converted thousands to Catholicism, and at thirty-five became Bishop of Geneva. Besides his well-known books, Introduction to the Devout Life and A Treatise on the Love of God, he carried on a vast correspondence. He was canonized in 1665 and proclaimed a Doctor of the Universal Church in 1877.