Saint Louis de Montfort

St. Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort (1673 – 1716) was born in Brittany, France, to a large farming family. As a child he displayed an unusual spiritual maturity and spent much time in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament. At the age of 19 he went on foot to Paris to study theology at a prestigious school with the support of a benefactor; along the way he gave his possessions to the poor and made a lifelong vow to live in poverty supported entirely on alms. He was ordained a priest at the age of 27, and at 32 discovered his calling to be an itinerant preacher, receiving the title of "Apostolic Missionary" from the Pope after his bishop tried to silence him. For the next 17 years he preached missions in countless towns and villages throughout France with an emphasis on renewal and reform. His fiery devotion, oratory skill, and identification with the poor led many souls to conversion. He was persecuted by the Jansenists, who, in their spiritual pride, poisoned him, banished him from preaching in their dioceses, and made an assassination attempt on his life. He had a profound devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary and taught on the power of the Holy Rosary. He also wrote a number of classic works on Marian devotion, the most famous being True Devotion to Mary. His feast day is April 28.

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