The Affability of Peacemakers

When you have to make arrangements, settle quarrels, or win others to your views, take care to be as mild as possible. You will accomplish more, and conquer more readily, by yielding and humbling yourself, than by harshness and disputation. Who does not know that more flies are caught with an ounce of honey than with a hundred barrels of vinegar? -St. Francis de Sales

The venerable Cardinal d’Arezzo excelled in this. He not only knew how to keep his own household in peace, and banish all differences from among them, when he was bishop and cardinal; but when he was a simple religious, he was considered to be a man very well adapted to settle lawsuits, to quiet discord, and to calm the most inflamed spirits. He succeeded in this not only by his prudence and dexterity in management, but also by his great affability and mildness, which won the affection of all, and so gave him great power to soften the most obstinate hearts.

St. John Berchmans, even when a child, had great success in settling the little disputes that arise among children, and the reason was, that prayers and gentleness were the means he employed.

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

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