THE SPIRIT OF LOVE: Based on the Teachings of St. Francois de Sales, by C. F. Kelley (Longmann, 21s.).
THIS is a profound study of the I teachings of St. Francis of Sales, based on his two great works, the Introduction to the Devout Life, and the Treatise on the Love of God, together with passages from his letters and conferences, as well as extracts from memoirs by his friends, particularly St. Jeanne de Chantal and JeanPierre Camus.
The teaching of St. Francis was so lucid, so direct that, even though he presented it occasionally in the form of an allegory, we feel that possibly no other spiritual writer has more affinity with our minds, separated as we are from his by an interval of over three centuries.
The saint dwelt constantly on certain fundamental truths which, if we would accept them in their entirety, could transform our lives. The Love of God, Gentleness, Holy Indifference, the acceptance of the present moment (so stressed later by Pere de Caussade), the "Now" of God which is Eternity, the dwelling of God in the soul, the constant elimination of the self; and all these basic realities are described here with the utmost clarity, with an exact accord between the writings of the saint and the commentary by the author. The two make one whole, and an admirable treatise
On the spiritual life.
"The lesson St. Francois would have us learn is the same taught by all the saints." "This world is a bridge upon which no houses should be built." "Love belong, to eternity." "Amour soutient. amour endure." "In the Now-moment you will find love."
The lines are familiar and to these St. Francis adds his own: "Raise up your eyes often to heaven, and see that this life is only a passage to eternity."