Top 50 Saints’ Quotes

I originally posted this several years ago. Since that time it has gotten nearly 100,000 hits! One of our biggest posts ever.

The top 50 Saints’ quotes, in an arbitrary ranking. There are many others that I didn’t put on the list that are great. Feel free to leave them in the comments.

  1. “Ignorance of Scripture is ignorance of Christ.”
    -St. Jerome

  2. “Since Christ Himself has said, “This is My Body” who shall dare to doubt that It is His Body?”
    -St. Cyril of Jerusalem
  3. “Teach us to give and not count the cost.”
    -St. Ignatius de Loyola
  4. “Pray as though everything depended on God. Work as though everything depended on you.”
    -St. Augustine
  5. “Don’t you long to shout to those youths who are bustling around you: Fools! Leave those worldly things that shackle the heart – and very often degrade it – leave all that and come with us in search of Love!”
    -St. Josemaria Escriva
  6. “For me prayer is a surge of the heart, it is a simple look towards Heaven, it is a cry of recognition and of love, embracing both trial and joy.”
    -St. Therese of Lisieux
  7. “To convert somebody go and take them by the hand and guide them.”
    -St. Thomas Aquinas
  8. “On the question of relating to our fellowman – our neighbor’s spiritual need transcends every commandment. Everything else we do is a means to an end. But love is an end already, since God is love.”
    -St. Teresia Benedicta (Edith Stein)
  9. “If you are what you should be, you will set the whole world ablaze!”
    -St. Catherine of Sienna
  10. “Lord, make me an instrument of your peace; where there is hatred, let me sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; and where there is sadness, joy.”
    -St. Francis
  11. “Our hearts were made for You, O Lord, and they are restless until they rest in you.”
    -St. Augustine of Hippo
  12. “Charity is certainly greater than any rule. Moreover, all rules must lead to charity.”
    -St. Vincent de Paul
  13. “Late have I loved you, O Beauty ever ancient, ever new, late have I loved you!”
    -St. Augustine
  14. “O Master, make me chaste, but not yet!”
    -St. Augustine
  15. “’Eat my flesh,’ [Jesus] says, ‘and drink my blood.’ The Lord supplies us with these intimate nutrients, he delivers over his flesh and pours out his blood, and nothing is lacking for the growth of his children”
    -St. Clement of Alexandria
  16. “Priests have received a power which God has given neither to angels nor to archangels. It was said to them: ‘Whatsoever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatsoever you shall loose, shall be loosed.’ Temporal rulers have indeed the power of binding; but they can only bind the body. Priests, in contrast, can bind with a bond which pertains to the soul itself and transcends the very heavens. Did [God] not give them all the powers of heaven?…What greater power is there than this? The Father has given all judgment to the Son. And now I see the Son placing all this power in the hands of men. They are raised to this dignity as if they were already gathered up to heaven”
    -St. John Chrysostom
  17. “The nation doesn’t simply need what we have. It needs what we are.”
    -St. Teresia Benedicta (Edith Stein)
  18. “We are to love God for Himself, because of a twofold reason; nothing is more reasonable, nothing more profitable.”
    -St. Bernard of Clairvaux
  19. “We always find that those who walked closest to Christ were those who had to bear the greatest trials.”
    -St. Teresa of Avila
  20. “Wherever the bishop shall appear, there let the multitude also be; even as, wherever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church.”
    -St. Ignatius of Antioch
  21. “If this is the way You treat Your friends, no wonder You have so few!”
    -St. Teresa of Avila
  22. “Give something, however small, to the one in need. For it is not small to one who has nothing. Neither is it small to God, if we have given what we could.”
    -St. Gregory Nazianzen
  23. “Christ be with me, Christ within me, Christ behind me, Christ before me, Christ beside me, Christ to win me, Christ to comfort me and restore me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me, Christ in quiet, Christ in danger, Christ in hearts of all that love me, Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.”
    -St. Patrick
  24. “Christ said, “I am the Truth”; he did not say “I am the custom.”
    -St. Toribio
  25. “All the efforts of the human mind cannot exhaust the essence of a single fly.”
    -St. Thomas Aquinas
  26. “There are more tears shed over answered prayers than over unanswered prayers.”
    -St. Teresa of Avila
  27. “I have no taste for corruptible food nor for the pleasures of this life. I desire the bread of God, which is the flesh of Jesus Christ, who was of the seed of David; and for drink I desire his blood, which is love incorruptible”
    -St. Ignatius of Antioch
  28. “You cannot be half a saint; you must be a whole saint or no saint at all.”
    -St. Therese of Lisieux
  29. “You must ask God to give you power to fight against the sin of pride which is your greatest enemy – the root of all that is evil, and the failure of all that is good. For God resists the proud.”
    -St. Vincent de Paul
  30. “Let us go forward in peace, our eyes upon heaven, the only one goal of our labors.”
    -St. Therese of Lisieux
  31. “When you approach the tabernacle remember that he has been waiting for you for twenty centuries.”
    – St. Josemaria Escriva
  32. “From silly devotions and sour-faced saints, good Lord, deliver us!”
    -St. Teresa of Avila
  33. “Love God, serve God; everything is in that.”
    -St. Clare of Assisi
  34. “Pray with great confidence, with confidence based upon the goodness and infinite generosity of God and upon the promises of Jesus Christ. God is a spring of living water which flows unceasingly into the hearts of those who pray.”
    -St. Louis de Montfort
  35. “Apart from the cross, there is no other ladder by which we may get to heaven.”
    -St. Rose of Lima
  36. “The creator of the heavens obeys a carpenter; the God of eternal glory listens to a poor virgin. Has anyone ever witnessed anything comparable to this? Let the philosopher no longer disdain from listening to the common laborer; the wise, to the simple; the educated, to the illiterate; a child of a prince, to a peasant.”
    -St. Anthony of Padua
  37. “Charity is that with which no man is lost, and without which no man is saved.”
    -St. Robert Bellarmine
  38. “Whether, therefore, we receive what we ask for, or do not receive it, let us still continue steadfast in prayer. For to fail in obtaining the desires of our heart, when God so wills it, is not worse than to receive it; for we know not as He does, what is profitable to us.”
    -St. John Chrysostom
  39. “What does the poor man do at the rich man’s door, the sick man in the presence of his physician, the thirsty man at a limpid stream? What they do, I do before the Eucharistic God. I pray. I adore. I love.” -St. Francis
  40. “Holy Communion is the shortest and safest way to heaven.”
    -Pope St. Pius X
  41. “We will either accuse ourselves or excuse ourselves.”
    -St. John Vianney
  42. “If a man wishes to be sure of the road he treads on, he must close his eyes and walk in the dark.”
    -St. John of the Cross
  43. “He loves, He hopes, He waits. If He came down on our altars on certain days only, some sinner, on being moved to repentance, might have to look for Him, and not finding Him, might have to wait. Our Lord prefers to wait Himself for the sinner for years rather than keep him waiting one instant.”
    -St. Julian Peter Eymard
  44. “Love is the most necessary of all virtues. Love in the person who preaches the word of God is like fire in a musket. If a person were to throw a bullet with his hands, he would hardly make a dent in anything; but if the person takes the same bullet and ignites some gunpowder behind it, it can kill. It is much the same with the word of God. If it is spoken by someone who is filled with the fire of charity- the fire of love of God and neighbor- it will work wonders.”
    -St. Anthony Mary Claret
  45. “Our Lord loves you and loves you tenderly; and if He does not let you feel the sweetness of His love, it is to make you more humble and abject in your own eyes.”
    -St. Pio of Pietrelcino
  46. “You learn to speak by speaking, to study by studying, to run by running, to work by working, and just so, you learn to love by loving. All those who think to learn in any other way deceive themselves.”
    -St. Francis de Sales
  47. “Pray, Hope, and Don’t Worry”
    -St. Pio of Pietrelcino
  48. “All the darkness in the world cannot extinguish the light of a single candle.”
    -St. Francis
  49. “Tribulation is a gift from God – one that he especially gives His special friends.”
    -St. Thomas More
  50. “If I speak to thee in friendship’s name, thou think’st I speak too coldly, if I mention love’s devoted flame, thou say’st I speak too boldly”
    – St. Thomas More


From the “he never said it” file:

  • “Preach the Gospel at all times. If necessary, use words.” -St. Francis

From the “not quite yet canonized” file:

  • “There are not over a 100 people in the U.S. that hate the Catholic Church, there are millions however, who hate what they wrongly believe to be the Catholic Church. Which is, of course, quite a different thing.”
    -Servant of God Fulton J. Sheen
  • “Jealousy is the tribute mediocrity pays to genius.”
    -Servant of God Fulton J. Sheen
  • “Hearing nuns’ confessions is like being stoned to death with popcorn.”
    -Servant of God Fulton J. Sheen
  • “We can do no great things; only small things with great love.”
    -Blessed Teresa of Calcutta
  • “Joy is a net of love by which we catch souls.”
    -Blessed Teresa of Calcutta
  • “It is a poverty to decide that a child must die so that you may live as you wish.”
    -Blessed Teresa of Calcutta
  • “As the family goes, so goes the nation and so goes the whole world in which we live.”
    -Venerable John Paul II
  • “Do not be afraid. Open wide the doors to Christ.”
    -Venerable John Paul II
  • “The human person is a good towards which the only proper attitude is love.”
    -Venerable John Paul II
  • “Freedom consists not in doing what we like, but in having the right to do what we ought.”
    -Venerable John Paul II

In my opinion, the most quotable Catholic of all time is G.K. Chesterton – so I have not included any of his here, there are too many.

Leave a Reply

  1. One who makes no mistakes, makes nothing.
    -St. Theresa of Avila

    Work and prayer. -St. Benedict
    Work is prayer. – St. John Bosco

  2. Did St. Francis of Assisi never say that quote (“Preach the Gospel at all times…”)? I have heard that so many times.

    By the way, greetings from Waco (Baylor/St. Peter’s Catholic Student Center). Ya’ll helped at our Awakening a while back. 😀

  3. I’ve heard Mother Therese originally told the quote (‘Preach the Gospel at all times..’). I am confused now:D Anyways, a grat list of uplifting quotes.

  4. Thanks for not trying to list Chesterton quotes. You’d have to publish his entire catalog of works. You can’t turn a page of Chesterton without finding something worth quoting.

  5. I thought that the following quote – “We can do no great things; only small things with great love.” – was originally said by St. Therese of Lisieux. I could be wrong. That said, THANK YOU for posting such a great list! I love reading all the great quotes 🙂

    Bridget N

  6. Awesome list that I will copy and save…my two favorite JPII quotes are:

    “Stupidity is also a gift of God, but one mustn’t misuse it.”

    and

    “The truth is not always the same as the majority decision.”

  7. ‘A man without prayer is an animal without the use of reason.’
    St. Philip Neri

    I love being Catholic and I love Aggies. I must be in cyber Heaven!
    =)

  8. ST JOHN EUDES : “The most evident mark of God’s anger and the most terrible castigation He can inflict upon the world are manifested when He permits His people to fall into the hands of clergy who are priests more in name than in deed, priests who practice the cruelty of ravening wolves rather than charity and affection of devoted shepherds …
    “When God permits such things, it is a very positive proof that He is thoroughly angry with His people, and is visiting His most dreadful anger upon them. That is why He cries unceasingly to Christians, ‘Return O ye revolting children … and I will give you pastors according to My own heart’. (Jer. 3:14,15) Thus, irregularities in the lives of priests constitute a scourge upon the people in consequence of sin.” (very fitting for the times we live in i think)

  9. Id; say that these quotes are truly inspirational and heartwarming. I often found myself so down these past few days but ever since I include reading motivational quotes in my daily life, it’s starting to get lighter.

    Cheers xxxx
    Regina
    Best Quotes Ever

  10. I truly love the quotes: The one that we are restless without resting in God by St. Augustine is very fascinating. Thanks

  11. “He loves, he hopes, he waits.Our lord prefers to wait Himself for the sinner for years rather than keep us waiting and instant ”
    – St.Maria Goretti
    How it will relate in modern life.. pls… answer pls….

    • Jesus waits for the sinner in the blessed sacrament where his real presence can be found by a repentant sinner.

  12. Thank you for this marvelous list. What a gift! And now Venerable John Paul Ii is St. John Paul II! May God be praised.