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was he that led and taught a life and faith in Providence, and told his disciples the danger of the cares and pleasures of this world; they choked the seed of the kingdom, stifled and extinguished virtue in the soul, and rendered man barren of good fruit. His sermon upon the mount is one continued, divine authority in favor of an universal temperance.


(A. D. 1651-1715.)

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FRANÇOIS DE SALIGNAC DE LA MOTHE FÉNELON, one of the saintliest and most liberal-minded of French divines, was born on the 6th of August, 1651, at the Château de Fénelon, in Dordogne, southwestern France. He received holy orders about 1675; became preceptor of the sons of the Dauphin in 1689, was admitted to the French Academy in 1693, and made Archbishop of Cambray in 1695. His most celebrated work, “Les Aventures de Télémaque,” was composed for his royal pupils, but not published until 1699. In close friendship with Madame Guyon and in sympathy with her doctrines, he was denounced as a heretic by Bossuet, and compelled to recant. His purity of character was conspicuous in the corrupted France of his day, and his personal influence upon the better spirits of the time was very great. He died at Cambray on the 7th of January, 1715.

“Seldom has a purer mind tabernacled in flesh. fessed to believe in an infallible church; but he listened habitually to the voice of God within him, and speaks of this in language so strong as to have given the Quakers some plea for ranking him among

themselves. .. His works have the great charm of coming fresh from the soul. He wrote from experience, and hence, though he often speaks a language which must seem almost a foreign one to men of the world, yet he always speaks in a tone of reality. . Fénelon saw far into the human heart and especially into the lurkings of self-love. He looked with a piercing eye through the disguises of sin. But he knew sin, not, as most men do, by bitter experience of its power, so much as by his knowledge and experience of virtue. Deformity was revealed to him by his refined perception and intense love of moral beauty. The light which he carried with him into the dark corners of the human heart, and by which he laid open


most hidden guilt, was that of celestial goodness. Hence, though the severest of censors, he is the most pitying. Not a tone of asperity escapes him.” - Dr. WILLIAM E. CHANNING, “Remarks on the Character and Writings of Fénelon (“Works,” v. i.).


(From “ Letters to Men,” No. xviii.) I. Be stedfast in your religious exercises; that is, in reading, daily meditation, regular confession, and communion.

II. Let your meditation always be systematic, and suited to your needs, with a view to mental humility and the repression of bodily sensuality.

III. Let your reading have a practical bearing, and tend to the correction of your faults. Apply all you read to yourself.

IV. Be careful as to the society you frequent habitually, and be specially on your guard as to the women with whom you are intimate.

V. Avoid harsh judgments of others, and let the recollection of your own faults hinder you from fastidiousness and censoriousness.

VI. Accustom yourself to withhold judgment in all things on which you are not obliged to pronounce. The habit of judging hastily, especially in an adverse sense, fosters rash judgments, presumption, a harsh, malicious criticism, reliance on self, and contempt for the opinions of others, all of which are out of keeping with the interior life, in which gentleness and humility are needful.

VII. Shun the dissipation which sudden fancies always involve. Such an engouement, to begin with, is too engrossing: it absorbs and chokes the inner life; then

something else takes its place, and life is spent in a succession of such fancies. When an engouement is in its first stage, let it cool down, and pray over it; then when somewhat abated, use it moderately, and so far as will not

harm you.

VIII. Never seek to change your position out of anxiety, depression, a false shame, or the itching desire to be somebody (de faire un personnage). All the states of life which you have not tried have their thorns and snares and weariness, only you do not see them from without. “ Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof. Tomorrow will take care for the things of itself.” For to-day think only of to-day.


(A. D. 1663–1742.)

JEAN BAPTISTE MASSILLON, one of the most eminent pulpit orators of France, was a native of Provence, born at Hyères, in 1663. Educated by the fathers of the Congregation of the Oratory, he entered that order in 1681, and was engaged for some years in teaching. His success as a lecturer drew him to the pulpit, where he acquired great fame. In 1717 he was made bishop of Clermont, and in 1719 he was elected a member of the Academy. He died at Clermont in 1742. The works left by him are mostly sermons, which are among the classics of French religious literature. The passages subjoined are from a volume of translated selections from Massillon's writings.


(From Selections from the Works of Jean Baptiste Massillon.)

The cause of all the evils, which reign amongst men, is the improper use they make of time. Some pass their lives in supine indolence, useless to their country, their fellow citizens, and themselves; others, in a tumult of human affairs and occupations: the former seem to exist but for the enjoyment of an unworthy repose, and to divest themselves of that listlessness by their diversions, which accompanies them everywhere; the latter, as if here only to agitate themselves incessantly with cares, which will disengage them from themselves. It appears, that time is a common enemy, against which all men conspire; all their lives are but a deplorable attention to

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