Writings on Love

By the Saints and Doctors

“I know of no other means to reach perfection than by love. To love: how perfectly our hearts are made for this! Sometimes I look for another word to use, but, in this land of exile, no other word expresses so well the vibrations of our soul. Hence we must keep to that one word: love.”

Thérèse of Lisieux

This is a list of writings of the saints that regard the living out of the love of God and neighbor. Suggestions for additions to these books are welcome.

On the Perfection of the Spiritual Life by St. Thomas Aquinas

This book examines perfection as consisting in the love of God and love of neighbor, the evangelical counsels of poverty, chastity, and obedience as means or ways to perfection, and explains the purpose and value of religious vows.

Writings by St. Francis de Sales

Treatise on the Love of God
This great classic book explains what love of God is, how it begins in us, how it increases or decreases according as we correspond to grace or not, how to distinguish true love of God from an apparent but false love, and how to make progress in love. It is a little bit harder to read than Introduction to the Devout Life, but not too difficult.

Introduction to the Devout Life 
This simple yet profound work on the spiritual life or Christian life deserves to be read time and again. St. Francis de Sales has been called a kind of prophet of the Second Vatican Council's teaching on the universal call to holiness and love.

Spiritual Conferences
These conferences given to the Sisters of the Visitation are directed at explaining the way of divine love to them, emphasizing particularly the virtues of humility and gentleness that accompany true charity.

Commentary On The Song of Songs by St. Bernard of Clairvaux

This spiritual commentary of St. Bernard on Solomon's Song of Songs interprets the book with reference to the relationship of God, who loves us deeply, powerfully, and with whom the most intimate loving relationship is possible.

On Loving God by St. Bernard of Clairvaux

This book is a meditation that aims to incite the love of God, reflecting on all God has done for us, the immense love he has given us in his Son. Note: the translation is not the best; those who can read Latin, may prefer the Latin text: De Diligendo Deo.

The Living Flame of Love by St. John of the Cross

This poem and commentary on it were written by St. John and the request of a woman whom he directed in the spiritual life, to express the heart burning with love.

Other works by St. John of the Cross - Ascent of Mount Carmel, Dark Night of The Soul, the Spiritual Canticle, and Counsels to a Religious

Practice of the Presence of God by Br. Lawrence of the Resurrection

This book tells how Br. Lawrence, by being constantly aware of God's presence, and remainingly lovingly with him, makes his entire life a prayer and offering to God, and of the method by which he acquired this habit of being constantly aware of God's presence.

Writings of St. Thérèse of Lisieux

More Books and Writings on Love

These are not by canonized saints, but other authors writing about love