A Father's Spiritual Testament to His Son
If the Lord has permitted you to have some trial, bear it willingly and with gratitude, considering that it has happened for your good and that perhaps you well deserved it. If the Lord bestows upon you any kind of prosperity, thank him humbly and see that you become no worse for it, either through vain pride or anything else, because you ought not to oppose God or offend him in the matter of his gifts.
. . .
Be kindhearted to the poor, the unfortunate and the afflicted. Give them as much help and consolation as you can. Thank God for all the benefits he has bestowed upon you, that you may be worthy to receive greater. . . .
In conclusion, dearest son, I give you every blessing that a loving father can give a son. May the . . . Holy Trinity . . . protect you from every evil. And may the Lord give you the grace to do his will so that he may be served and honored through you, that in the next life we may together come to see him, love him and praise him unceasingly. Amen.
(Excerpt from a spiritual testament from King Louis IX, saint, to his son (presumably his heir and successor, King Phillip III, the Bold). St. Louis was the father of eleven children.)