From Chapter 1 of Saint Josemaría Escrivá’s book The Way: Character


Never correct anyone while you are still indignant about a fault committed. Wait until the next day, or even longer. And then, calmly, and with a purer intention, make your reprimand. You will gain more by one friendly word than by a three-hour quarrel. Control your temper.


One of my favorite saints is Teresa of Avila, a mystic and doctor of the Catholic Church. She is one of the most universally beloved teachers of the spiritual life and is heralded by Catholics, Orthodox and Protestant Christians alike for the assistance her writings and example provide in growing in intimacy with God.

God has been very good to me, for I never dwell upon anything wrong which a person has done, so as to remember it afterwards. If I do remember it, I always see some other virtue in that person.

I heard a story once that told of a time where she became very angry at Our Lord. While traveling in a wagon during a rainy day on a road that was very muddy the wheel got stuck in the mud and broke off. As she was getting out of the wagon Teresa slipped and fell in the mud. She looked up to heaven and said “Lord, if this is how you treat your friends, it’s no wonder you have so few of them!”

Even saints lose their patience.

Some of the following quotes by holy men and women teach us that anger pushes God away, and that a weapon we can wield to ensure this doesn’t happen is prayer. Any of these are worth writing down on a sheet of paper and taping to our mirror as a reminder to control our temper.

Virtues are formed by prayer. Prayer preserves temperance. Prayer suppresses anger. Prayer prevents emotions of pride and envy. Prayer draws into the soul the Holy Spirit, and raises man to Heaven. ~St. Ephraem of Syria

Let nothing disturb thee; Let nothing dismay thee; All thing pass; God never changes Patience attains All that it strives for. He who has God finds he lacks nothing: God alone suffices. ~St. Teresa of Avila

Where there is schism and anger, there is no place for God. ~St. Ignatius of Antioch

Never be in a hurry; do everything quietly and in a calm spirit. Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever, even if your whole world seems upset. ~St. Frances de Sales

When we have to reply to anyone who has insulted us, we should be careful to do it always with gentleness. A soft answer extinguishes the fire of wrath. ~St. Alphonsus Liguori

When we have to reply to some one who speaks harshly to us, we must always do it with gentleness. If we are angry, it is better to keep silence. ~St. Alphonsus Maria de Liguori

It avails nothing to subdue the body, if the mind allows itself to be controlled by anger. ~Pope St. Gregory the Great

How is it they live in such harmony the billions of stars – when most men can barely go a minute without declaring war in their minds about someone they know? ~St. Thomas Aquinas

Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless. ~Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

If you judge people, you have no time to love them. ~Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

While you are proclaiming peace with your lips, be careful to have it even more fully in your heart. ~St. Frances of Assisi