The Power of Meekness

We ought to deal kindly with all, and to manifest those qualities which spring naturally from a heart tender and full of Christian charity; such as affability, love, and humility. These virtues serve wonderfully to gain the hearts of men, and to encourage them to embrace things that are more repugnant to nature. -St. Vincent de Paul

St. Francis de Sales dealt with every one with so much meekness that without any rough measures he arranged every thing according to his own will, and always did what he wished. He did this in a manner so gentle, and at the same time so full of authority, that no one could resist his persuasions. He treated all with respect, welcomed all amiably, and granted requests with great suavity and cordiality. This gave him such influence and power over hearts, that all yielded to him.

The Abbot Servius being one day treated with great rudeness by a countryman, not only bore it with extreme patience, but replied with much sweetness. At this, the man, struck with admiration and compunction, at once threw himself at his feet to ask his pardon, and afterwards became one of his monks.

Text from A Year With the Saints (New York: P.J. Kenedy & Sons, 1891).

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