Saturday, 6 May 2017

# Saints

Saint François de Laval


The 6th of May is the feast day of Saint François de Laval.

Saint Francis-Xavier de Montmorency-Laval was born on 1623 to one of France's most illustrious families and had 7 siblings. His piety was learnt from his mother, and he desired to become a priest and missionary. He was appointed by Pope Alexander VII to be the first Apostolic Vicar of New France (Canada). His territory encompasses all of Canada and the central United States. He came to Quebec in 1659 and the population was only 500 people. He supported missions, built a cathedral dedicated to the Immaculate Conception, taught devotion to Our Lady, founded a seminary and an industrial school, and began the first Catholic school in Canada. To minister his flock he travelled year-round crossing land and water in long journeys. He became Canada's first Bishop when Quebec became a diocese. He fought the alcohol trade to Indian tribes by outlawing it within his territory and excommunicating those involved with the trade. An Iroquois chief was converted and baptised by him, and became a promoter of the Christian faith and gain converts from local tribes. He is known for his influence and holiness in life.

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