François de Sales et la pauvreté

Abstract : We wanted to describe the salesian way to poverty as well as the theological and practical prospects which wer thus opened by the founder of the visitation order. First we presented the diocesis of Geneva at the time when Francis of Sales was engaged in his episcopal ministry. Very heedful of the destitution of the people around him, especially of his clergy and of the monks, he acts with great effectiveness. He multiplies proceedings with those who hold political or religious authority in order to establish justice. He asserts with much firmness the rights of the most deprived people, of the converted ones : universalism marks his action. As a reforming bishop, he looks after the good quality of the religious life, he asks for new congregations to come and founds a palce of spiritual training, with the plan of turning it into a seminary. Another form of poverty also worries Francis of Sales : spiritual poverty. Far from resigning himself to the misery of sin, he displays on the contrary how the richness of god's love comes and fills all human weakness up. Only a misuse of his freedom may sever man from his creator. With much tactfulness, Francis of Sales induces those who want to follow him towards the path to humbleness and confidence that leads to peace and joy. The mystery of human life takes root from the contemplation of the incarnation mystery which is the real keystone of the salesian theology that is based itself on paulinian grounds : "you know the grace of our lord Jesus-Christ, rich as he was he made himself poor for your sake in order to make you rich by means of his poverty" (2cor 8,9). Imitation of Christ's destitution invites the christians to follow evangelical poverty, to act in a concrete way. Practice of the salesian poverty requires the same demands whatever the status of life may be ; only the applications change according to the circumstances, unworldliness means a greater availability to the spiritual values and fosters sharing. It makes up the first step that comes before the spiritual disvestment on the way to the beatitudes. Deeply salesian, this "spiritual circumcision" leads to the purity of faith. He founded with St Chantal the visitation order. The example of their spiritual friendship which was quite out of the common, gives the best pattern of a human relationship that has matured perfectly attuned to god. Francis of Sales is the master of the happiness that Christ's incarnation offers to the whole mankind and to every private individual. He invites with much tactfulness and psychological sense those who want to escort mary's joyful walk as she goes to meet her son, and opens the human heart to the ever nenewed joy of the magnificat
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Geneviève Pochat. François de Sales et la pauvreté. Littératures. Université Paul Verlaine - Metz, 1986. Français. ⟨NNT : 1986METZ001L⟩. ⟨tel-01775674⟩

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