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The Valiant Woman, Conferences for Women, by Msgr. Landriot
The Valiant Woman, Conferences for Women, by Msgr. Landriot


 
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The Valiant Woman, Conferences for Women, by Msgr. Landriot, Archbishop of Rheims.   The most valiant of all women is the Blessed Virgin Mary.  The word valiant derives from the Latin verb "valere", meaning 'to be strong.'  True valiance is exhibited by courage in battle, which is the fruit of the cardinal virtue of fortitude.  Although the habitual virtue of fortitude is most manifest under its higher aspect as a gift of the Holy Ghost--that is, when its possessor (guided by prudence and justice) is engaged in a confession of faith wherein the danger of death is imminent (as with the martyrs)--it is also manifest in the daily trials of the soldier of Christ who conquers inordinate self-love with God's grace.    The valiant Christian woman does not have to exhibit the heroism of a St. Joan of Arc, but she must rule well the kingdom of her home in prudence, mercy, justice and truth.  In figurative parables, the Holy Ghost Himself describes "le femme forte" in the last twenty verses of the Book of Proverbs.    This magnificent book, written by Monseigneur Jean Francois Landriot, Bishop of La Rochelle, is an extended version of domestic oriented discourses each of which he delivered for 16 consecutive months in the mid 1800's to the married ladies of the Society of Charity.  The eloquent prelate begins the addresses with a theme drawn from the final verses of the inspired similitudes of Solomon.  Landriot (later, Archbishop of Rheims) then proceeds to expound upon the moral of the passage with a practical brilliance that could only have come from a confessor whose heart was well seasoned in discerning the particular characteristics and maternal predispositions of the feminine soul.  What emerges from these 213 pages is an achievable ideal for every daughter of Eve who possesses a wounded nature elevated by sanctifying grace.  Not one page fails to demonstrate what grace, what beauty, and what joy supernature can bring forth in the life of a woman called to the vocation of Christian motherhood.

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