Saint Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort was born in January 31, 1673 in Montfort-sur-Meu, the eldest surviving child of eighteen born to Jean-Baptiste and Jeanne Robert Grignion. St. Louis-Marie possessed a strong devotion to the Blessed Sacrament as a child, and was also intimately devoted to the Blessed Virgin, especially through the Rosary. He took the name Marie at his confirmation.
The saint manifested a love for the poor while he was at school and joined a society of young men who ministered to the poor and the sick on school holidays. When he was 19, he walked 130 miles to Paris to study theology, gave all he had to the poor that he met along the way and made a vow to live only on alms. He was ordained priest at the age of 27, and for some time fulfilled the duties of chaplain in a hospital. In 1705, when he was 32, he discovered his great gift for preaching and committed himself to it for the rest of his life. During sixteen years he preached the Gospel in countless towns and villages. As an orator he was highly gifted, his language being simple but replete with fire and divine love. His whole life was conspicuous for virtues difficult for modern degeneracy to comprehend: constant prayer, love of the poor, poverty carried to an unheard-of degree, joy in humiliations and persecutions.
But he also met with opposition, especially from the Jansenists, a heretical movement within the Church that believed in absolute Predestination, in which only a chosen few are saved, and the rest damned. Much of France was influenced by Jansenism, including many bishops, who banished Loius-Marie from preaching in their dioceses. He was even poisoned by Jansenists in La Rochelle, but survived, though he suffered ill health after.Read More »