Saint Jean-Marie Vianney is known as "the parish priest of Ars" and serves as a model for parish priests. In humility, he worked for many years cultivating the faith of those faithful whom he directed with commitment and love.


Saint Jean-Marie was born in Lyons, France in 1786. After many difficulties during his studies, he was finally ordained a priest and appointed to the parish of Ars, a small town in France. His simple and direct homilies, his prayer life and the ascetic life that characterized him succeeded in renewing the community. As a father confessor, he knew how to listen to each one who came to him and he attracted thousands of the faithful. He died in 1859.

He wrote: "My children, your hearts are small, but prayer enlarges them and renders them capable of loving God. Prayer is a foretaste of heaven, an overflowing of heaven. It never leaves us without sweetness; it is like honey, it descends into the soul and sweetens everything. In a prayer well-made, troubles vanish like snows under the rays of the sun" (Catechetical Instructions).