Saints' Quotes

holy quotations for purification of the soul


for reflection and meditation


'Let us also love our neighbors as ourselves. Let us have charity and humility. Let us give alms because these cleanse our souls from the stains of sin. Men lose all the material things they leave behind them in this world, but they carry with them the reward of their charity and the alms they give. For these they will receive from the Lord the reward and recompense they deserve.'

St. Francis of Assisi

'"Sell," says He, "your goods, and give alms."

And again: "Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon the earth, where moth and rust do corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal. But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. For where thy treasure is, there will thy heart be also."

And when He wished to set forth a man perfect and complete by the observation of the law, He said, "If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven; and come and follow me."'

St. Cyprian of Carthage

'If you are attached to the things of this earth, you should give alms sufficient to enable you to punish your avarice by depriving yourself of all that is not absolutely necessary for life.'

St. Jean Marie Baptiste Vianney, the Cure of Ars

'Give alms out of thy substance, and turn not away thy face from any poor person: for so it shall come to pass that the face of the Lord shall not be turned from thee.

According to thy ability be merciful. If thou have much, give abundantly; if thou have little, take care even so to bestow willingly a little.

But do not hesitate to give alms; for thus thou storest up to thyself a good reward for the day of necessity.

For alms deliver from all sin, and from death, and will not suffer the soul to go into darkness.

Alms shall be a great confidence before the most high God, to all them that give it.'

Tobias 4:7-12

'In the matter of piety, poverty serves us better than wealth, and work better than idleness, especially since wealth becomes an obstacle even for those who do not devote themselves to it.

Yet, when we must put aside our wrath, quench our envy, soften our anger, offer our prayers, and show a disposition which is reasonable, mild, kindly, and loving, how could poverty stand in our way? For we accomplish these things not by spending money but by making the correct choice.

Almsgiving above all else requires money, but even this shines with a brighter luster when the alms are given from our poverty. The widow who paid in the two mites was poorer than any human, but she outdid them all.'

St. John Chrysostom

'As far as you can, do some manual work so as to be able to give alms, for it is written that alms and faith purify from sin.'

St. Poemen

'Raphael the angel also witnesses the like, and exhorts that alms should be freely and liberally bestowed, saying, "Prayer is good, with fasting and alms; because alms doth deliver from death, and it purgeth away sins."

He shows that our prayers and fastings are of less avail, unless they are aided by almsgiving; that entreaties alone are of little force to obtain what they seek, unless they be made sufficient by the addition of deeds and good works. The angel reveals, and manifests, and certifies that our petitions become efficacious by almsgiving, that life is redeemed from dangers by almsgiving, that souls are delivered from death by almsgiving.'

St. Cyprian of Carthage

'When you can do good, defer it not, because "alms delivers from death."'

St. Polycarp of Smyrna

'Do not complain then of your poverty, my daughter, - we only complain of that which is unwelcome, and if poverty is unwelcome to you, you are no longer poor in spirit.

Do not fret under such assistance as is needful; therein lies one great grace of poverty. It were overambitious to aim at being poor without suffering any inconvenience, in other words, to have the credit of poverty and the convenience of riches.

Do not be ashamed of being poor, or of asking alms. Receive what is given you with humility, and accept a refusal meekly. Frequently call to mind Our Lady's journey into Egypt with her Holy Child, and of all the poverty, contempt and suffering they endured. If you follow their example you will indeed be rich amid your poverty.'

St. Francis de Sales

'There are many poor men and poor women: set apart some one constantly to remain there: let the poor man be though but as a guard to thy house: let him be to thee wall and fence, shield and spear. Where alms are, the devil dares not approach, nor any other evil thing.

Let us not overlook so great a gain.'

St. John Chrysostom

'For when the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through places without water, seeking rest; and not finding. . .

For the unclean spirit enters easily into a man, and easily goes out from him.

For as often as a man, either in thought or in action, does something that is wicked, the devil is present with him. But should he begin to repent from his heart, the devil will leave him. And going out he walks through dry and waterless places, tempting those that are free of the sap of malice and of lust, and in whom he finds no rest; since he seeks what is corrupt and moist. And for this was it written of him: He sleepeth under the shadow, in the covert of the reed, and in moist places (Job xl. 16); in which reference the genitals are signified. Then he saith: I will return into my house whence I came out. Because he could find no foothold in the good he turns back to the wicked.

For the devil may tempt the good, but he cannot find rest in them; for he is shaken violently, and upset, and driven out, now by their prayers, now by their tears of repentance, and now by their almsgiving and similar good works.'

St. Bruno

'Satisfaction consists in the cutting off of the causes of the sin. Thus, fasting is the proper antidote to lust; prayer to pride, to envy, anger and sloth; alms to covetousness.'

St. Richard of Chichester

'You are mistaken, and are deceived, whosoever you are, that think yourself rich in this world. Listen to the voice of your Lord in the Apocalypse, rebuking men of your stamp with righteous reproaches: "Thou sayest," says He, "I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked.

I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness may not appear in thee; and anoint thine eyes with eye-salve, that thou mayest see."

You therefore, who are rich and wealthy, buy for yourself of Christ gold tried by fire; that you may be pure gold, with your filth burnt out as if by fire, if you are purged by almsgiving and righteous works. Buy for yourself white raiment, that you who had been naked according to Adam, and were before frightful and unseemly, may be clothed with the white garment of Christ.'

St. Cyprian of Carthage

'Have you been working on Sunday? Have you been buying or selling without necessity in the course of this holy day? Give to the poor some alms which will exceed the profit you have made.'

St. Jean Marie Baptiste Vianney, the Cure of Ars

'A wise heart, and which hath understanding, will abstain from sins, and in the works of justice shall have success. Water quencheth a flaming fire, and alms resisteth sins: And God provideth for him that sheweth favour: he remembereth him afterwards, and in the time of his fall he shall find a sure stay.'

Ecclesiasticus 3:32-34

'Others will give away large alms in order to be considered charitable people. Should they not give these out of their own wages, which so often they squander on trifles? If this has happened to you, do not forget that you are obliged to pay back to the person concerned all that you gave to the poor without the knowledge or consent of your employers. Then again, there is the one who has been entrusted by his employer with the supervision of the staff, or of workmen, who gives out wine and all sorts of other things to them if they ask him.

Understand this clearly: if you know how to give, you must know how to pay back. . .'

St. Jean Marie Baptiste Vianney, the Cure of Ars

'Thinkest thou that to a Christian -- thinkest thou that to a servant of the Lord -- thinkest thou that to one given up to good works -- thinkest thou that to one that is dear to his Lord, anything will be wanting?

Unless you imagine that he who feeds Christ is not himself fed by Christ, or that earthly things will be wanting to those to whom heavenly and divine things are given, whence this unbelieving thought, whence this impious and sacrilegious consideration?'

St. Cyprian of Carthage

'Yes, my dear children, everything is good and precious in God's sight when we act from the motives of religion and of charity because Jesus Christ tells us that a glass of water would not go unrewarded. You see, therefore, my children, that although we may be quite poor, we can still easily give alms.'

St. Jean Marie Baptiste Vianney, the Cure of Ars

'The best remedy for dryness of spirit, is to picture ourselves as beggars in the presence of God and the Saints, and like a beggar, to go first to one saint, then to another, to ask a spiritual alms of them with the same earnestness as a poor fellow in the streets would ask an alms of us.'

St. Philip Neri

'"Give," he says, "and it shall be given to you. " How soon do the misgivings of distrust and the puttings off of avarice fall to the ground, when humanity may fearlessly spend what the Truth pledges Himself to repay.

Be steadfast, Christian giver: give what you may receive, sow what you may reap, scatter what you may gather. Fear not to spend, sigh not over the doubtfulness of the gain. Your substance grows when it is wisely dispensed. Set your heart on the profits due to mercy, and traffic in eternal gains. Your Recompenser wishes you to be munificent, and He who gives that you may have, commands you to spend, saying, "Give, and it shall be given to you." You must thankfully embrace the conditions of this promise. For although you have nothing that you did not receive, yet you cannot fail to have what you give.'

Pope St. Leo the Great

'If we should be saved and become saints, we ought always to stand at the gates of the Divine mercy to beg and pray for, as an alms, all that we need.'

St. Alphonsus Maria de Liguori

'The poor should live by alms.'

St. Benedict Joseph Labre

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