Claude de la Colombiere was beatified in 1929 and canonized by Pope John Paul II in 1992.
Claude was born of noble mothers in 1641 in Saint-Symphoriend’Ozon, which is between Lyons and Vienne in France. In 1659, he entered the Society of Jesus. After living the religious lifetime for 15 years, Claude decided to make a vow to live as perfectly as he maybe could, saying faithfully the rule and constitutions of his order under the penalty of guilt. All who knew him well and lives with him in the monastery attested to the fact that he did this with utmost exactitude.
He last-minute was met superior at the Jesuit house at Paray-le Monial and while there became the spiritual director of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque. Being her spiritual director, he naturally developed a deep devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. He was sent to England in 1676 to be a priest for the Duchess of York and later the Queen of Great Britain. He still maintained his lifestyle as much as possible at the sovereign Court of St. James and continued his missionary work. Although separated from Margaret Mary, he counseled her through written correspondence.
He tolerated health problems mainly with his throat and lungs, which often stimulated problems with his sermon. While anxiously awaiting a summons back to France, he was arrested as a conspirator and jailed. Because of his affections with both the Duchess of York and Louis XIV, he was able to escape the death penalty, but was communicated into exile. He spent the last two years of his life at Lyons and died there on February 15, 1682.
Among the writings of St. Colombiere are” Pious Thinkings ,”” Reflections on the Passion ,” and” Retreat and Spiritual Letters .” These were published under the designation, Oeuvres du R.P. Claude de la Colombiere in 1832. St. Colombiere’s relics were available in the convent of the Visitation nuns at Paray-le-Monial.
Dear Father in heaven, we admire you and thank you for giving me the wisdom of the Jesuits, most especially Saint Colombiere. As confessor and advisor to St. Margaret Mary, he expedited spiritually in bringing to the world the devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. For this alone we are blest, but we thank you too for the life of St. Colombiere, which he lived so perfectly for Your beauty. May we too seek to live holy life-times that are pleasing to You, through Your blessing. Amen.
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