Patrons & Founders
Learn more about the lives and legacies of some of the sources and followers of the Salesian spiritual tradition through both their biographies and selected thoughts/quotes from their writings.
St. Francis de Sales (1567-1622)
Patron of the Oblates, St. Francis de Sales was a bishop who believed that all people were called to a life of holiness, regardless of their state in life. Here, he foreshadowed the vision of the Second Vatican Council. From his writings, preaching, and ministry grew what is known as “Salesian” spirituality. He is a doctor of the church and best-known for his practical, down-to-earth approach to living the Gospel.
St. Jane de Chantal (1572-1641)
St. Jane de Chantal was a friend of and co-worker with St. Francis de Sales. A widowed mother of four adult children, she founded the Visitation of Holy Mary with St. Francis de Sales. This Visitation religious community remains strong today and has grown to take us Oblates as "cousins" in the Salesian family. By the time of her death over 80 Visitation communities had been established.
Bl. Louis Brisson, OSFS (1817-1908)
Blessed Louis Brisson, OSFS, was a diocesan priest who, along with Mary de Sales Chappuis, VHM, founded the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales, a congregation dedicated to spreading the optimistic, inspired-common-sense wisdom of St. Francis de Sales in a variety of ministries and apostolates. Fr. Brisson spent much of his life as the chaplain to the Visitation community in Troyes, France.
St. Leonie Aviat, OSFS (1844-1914)
St. Leonie Aviat, OSFS, co-founded the Oblate Sisters of St. Francis de Sales with Blessed Louis Brisson, OSFS. Her congregation was founded to provide for both the physical, social and spiritual needs of girls exploited in factories and mills springing up throughout France during the Industrial Revolution.