Next Tuesday the Church celebrates the feast day of St. John Vianney, the Curé of Ars (1786-1859). He is the patron saint of parish priests, offering a model of humble service. Jean Baptiste-Marie Vianney struggled in seminary because he had difficulty learning Latin. He never rose to high Church office but was assigned to be the cure’ (pastor) of the small French hamlet of Ars. In the wake of the French Revolution many had lost their faith, but Vianney brought them back to Christ.
The holiness of Vianney spread throughout France and the world. In his final years he was known to spend 16 hours a day hearing confessions. Vianney’s humble life of service offers Catholics a model that runs counter to the celebrity driven and self-indulgent culture common in our day. Watch this Vianney video to learn more.