Daily Homily Thoughts, 1/24/2017

Today is the feast day of St. Francis de Sales.  He was born in 1567, right around the time when the Protestant Reformation was hot and heavy. Francis de Sales was surrounded by Calvinism, and he almost bought into it. He was almost sold on predestination and for a time feared greatly he was predestined for hell. Fortunately he came to his senses and realized what authentic Christianity has always taught: we are sufficient to stand with God’s grace.  So he said beautifully: “Let the enemy rage at the gate, let him knock, let him push, let him cry, let him howl, let him do worse; we know for certain that he cannot enter except by the door of our consent.”  He was only 35 when he became bishop, and he became bishop of Geneva. Geneva was the stronghold of Calvinism.  He fought against it gently and effectively. He famously said that “a spoonful of honey attracts more bees than a bucket of vinegar.”  A good lesson for us all.