St. Louis’ advice to rulers

Today the Catholic church celebrates the feast of St. Louis, king of France, who lived between 1214 and 1270. Though we should critique some of his policies, especially toward Jews and Moslems,  all those who govern should heed these words that he wrote in his spiritual testament to his son:

 “Be kindly disposed toward the poor, the wretched, and afflicted; help them as much as you can and console them. Thank God for all the blessings he has bestowed on you so that you may be worthy to receive greater ones. Be just toward your subjects; in matters of justice adhere to the line, departing neither to the right nor to the left. Incline to the side of the poor rather than to the rich until you are certain where the truth lies. Take care that all your subjects are safeguarded in justice and peace…”

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