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St. Jane Frances Fremiot de Chantal

Widow

Feast Day - August 21

Born of noble parents at Dijon in Burgundy, Jane Frances Fremiot de Chantal lost her mother while she was still a girl, and commended herself to the care of the Virgin Mother of God. Her father gave her in marriage to Baron de Chantal, and she showed herself to be a valiant woman above all others, making herself all things to all persons.

When her husband was killed while hunting, she made a vow of continence, and she so mastered herself that she did not hesitate to act as god-mother to the son of the man who killed her husband. Lest later on she should be moved from her determination to observe chastity, she renewed her vow and inscribed the Most Holy Name of Jesus on her breast with a hot iron.

With St. Francis de Sales as her spiritual director, who taught her the divine will, she laid the foundations of the religious Institute of the Visitation of Holy Mary, which she spread far and wide. Finally she bound herself by a vow always to do what she understood to be most perfect. Full of merits, she went to the Lord on December 13, 1641, at Moulins, and was enrolled among the Saints by Clement XIII.

Taken from The Hours of the Divine Office in English and Latin, Vol. III: August to Advent (Collegeville, Minnesota: Liturgical Press, 1963), pp. 1460-1461.