March 7, Blessed Christopher of Milan

Blessed Christopher came into this world at the beginning of the fifteenth century. The place of his birth was Milan. His family were members of a noble house of that city. As a youth he had distinguished himself by the piety and purity of his life, but his virtues certainly advanced to a state of singular perfection after he had donned the garb of St Francis. The exactness with which this young man of noble descent practiced Franciscan poverty was admirable.

After he had been ordained to the priesthood, all his efforts were directed towards saving immortal souls. The convent of Our Lady of Grace, which he had established, soon developed into something like a national shrine. Everybody wanted to hear his inspired sermons and through him to find the path that led to God. The people came from far and near in order to recommend themselves to his intercession with God.

Much good can be effected by the good use of the tongue. “The tongue of the just is a choice silver; the lips of the just teach many” (Prov. 10,21-22). Blessed Christopher used his tongue to give good advice and to preach the Word of God, and so to point out the way of salvation.

The correct use of the tongue means keeping the golden mean between speech and silence. “Let your speech be always in grace seasoned with salt, that you may know how to answer every man” (Col. 4,6). Sometimes the honor of God and of the Church or the welfare of inferiors require us to speak and to warn and to admonish. It is advisable to be silent, if one sees in advance that no good will come of it, or that it will only be like oil poured on a fire.

Rich in merits, Blessed Christopher of Milan died in the year 1485. Pope Leo XIII confirmed the veneration which had been paid to this apostolic man of God since time immemorial.

The Franciscan Book of Saints, Marion Habig

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