Maxims of the Saints
by François Fénelon
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In 1688, Archbishop Fenelon met Madame Guyon, and came to deeply admire her for
her Christian piety. The two of them swiftly became very close friends. However, the
church urged Fenelon to condemn Guyon, for her attitude towards mysticism sparked
concerns of heresy. Ultimately, Fenelon refused to abandon his friend, and in response
to the church’s condemnation, he argued in forty-five points that saints from all eras had
held views similar to Guyon’s. These points are the Maxims of the Saints, and Fenelon’s
defense serves as one of the earliest arguments in favor of the movement that later
became known as Quietism.