Virtue of Meekness – Thirteenth Day of May
Learn of Me that I am meek and humble of heart. St. Matt. 11:29.
There is nothing more bitter than the rind of a nut when it is green; nevertheless, there is nothing sweeter or better when it is preserved. So it is with a reprimand, which in its very nature is harsh, but cooked in the fire of charity, seasoned with sweetness, it becomes sweet, delicious, and very useful. — St. Francis of Sales.
When St. Francis Borgia learned that any of his companions had committed some fault, he would say to him: “I beg of Our Lord to pardon you, that I may yet see you a saint. O my brother, how could you speak in such a manner? How could you do such an act?”
St. Vincent de Paul said that it happened but three times in his life that he spoke severely in correcting, thinking that it was necessary to do so; but he repented very soon, as he found the result was not what he hoped for. This was the manner of his correcting, the means which he took to sweeten the reproof he made, and to make it produce fruit: He never reproached one immediately after a fault, unless absolutely necessary, but reflected always before God upon what he ought to say. He would also show great affection for the person whom he was obliged to correct, and praise him if he could find anything in him praiseworthy. He then would say: “God has permitted that you should commit this fault for your humiliation, and to give you reason to labor with greater fervor for your sanctification.”
My God, grant that I may never correct but with a true charity, with sweetness, and after asking God to bless what I would say.