The First Parish of Bergen County: Bringing you Christ since 1854


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About Our Patron Saint

Saint Francis de Sales: Patron of Journalists and Screenwriters

A patient and kind person, Francis knew he wanted to become a priest. Despite this, he did not discuss his aspirations with anyone for 13 years. Instead, he enjoyed quiet solitude, telling himself to neither hurry nor worry.


God finally sent a message to him while he was riding his horse. He fell off three times. Every time his sword came out, it made the sign of the cross. Francis realized that this was a message from God.

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He became a provost of a diocese, but many of his preachings left his audience confused and bewildered. The parishioners felt that Francis acted superior and conceited. However, this was not true. Francis only had novel ideas and was very idealistic. He came up with an idea that most people felt was utterly ridiculous: Francis wanted to convert 60,000 Calvinists back to Catholicism.


Everyone, including his father, ridiculed and scoffed at his idea. It was only his cousin who had faith in him and joined him on his lonely quest. For years, he failed. Not one person converted and hardly anyone listened.

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Francis decided to write his ideas down on paper and shared them with others. People read his writings and soon, 40,000 had converted back to Christianity. This showed us all, for the first time, the “power of the pen.” Francis ultimately prevailed and taught us the power of perseverance.

Prayer to Saint Francis


Most loving and lovable Saint, you preached to thousands with the pen, introducing them to “the devout life.” You wrote sublimely about God’s love and made countless converts by your Christlike kindness.


Make writers realize the power of the Press and inspire them with your zeal for spreading truth. Help them to write honestly no matter what the subject, so that they will really contribute to bringing about God’s Kingdom. Amen.

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