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Entries related to: st-francis

Saint Francis of Assisi and the Animals

  It's hard to separate Francis of Assisi and animals. Stories abound of how this great saint could communicate with animals and felt at one with all creation. Here are a few of the stories that were first recorded by Thomas of Celano during the 13th century.
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The Legacy of Saint Francis of Assisi

Robert Ellsberg, author of The Franciscan Saints, reads the chapter of his book devoted to Saint Francis of Assisi. What was Saint Francis of Assisi’s appeal? Even his follower, Brother Masseo, asked this question, only half in jest: “Why you?” he asked Francis. “Why does all the world seem to be running after you, and everyone seems to want to see you and hear you and obey you? You are not a handsome man. You do not have great learning or wisdom. You are not a nobleman. So why is all the world running after you?”
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Saint Francis and the Power of Prayer

Our lives are so easily fragmented between responsibilities to friends, family, employers, neighbors, and the larger human family that we may think we don’t have the time or energy for prayer. That was the experience of Saint Francis of Assisi up until his mid-twenties. Then he discovered that prayer was more real than many of the things he had been considering more important.
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The Holy Humility of Saint Francis

And behold, he [a companion of Saint Francis] went into ecstasy and saw among the many thrones in heaven one that was more honorable than the rest, ornamented with precious stones, and radiant with all glory. He wondered within himself at this noble throne and considered silently whose it might be. And while he was considering these things, he heard a voice saying to him: “This throne belonged to one of the fallen angels, but now it is reserved for the humble Francis.”
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Followers of Saint Francis: Making Right with God and Nature

 The rugged beauty of the windswept Maine coastline instilled a keen sense of care for creation in Benjamin Vail, OFS. Growing up in Brunswick, Maine, Vail says he found himself “surrounded by the ocean, forests, and farmland.” One could imagine Saint Francis himself praising God in such a place. But it would take years for Vail to respond to the call to conversion and the Secular Franciscan Order. 
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The Mercy of Saint Francis

Many people focus on characteristics such as voluntary poverty or care for creation when considering the life and model of Saint Francis of Assisi. I often wish that, just as regularly, they would notice the theme of mercy that frequently appears in his writing. This is a theme that has become even more important as Pope Francis has dedicated much of his teaching and ministry to showing the compassionate and merciful face of God in the world. 
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Muslim Awareness

 A report came out recently that showed a real deficiency among our colleagues in the Catholic press. The report, “Danger & Dialogue: American Catholic Public Opinion and Portrayals of Islam,” was conducted by the Bridge Initiative at Georgetown University. Its principal author is Jordan Denari Duffner, a research fellow at the Alwaleed Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding. That understanding is a cause that's close to the heart of Franciscan Media.
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Follower of Saint Francis: Rick Riccioli, OFM Conv.

Image: Visión de San Francisco de Asís, Francisco de Zurbarán. "Be real! Action speaks volumes!” Friar Rick Riccioli, OFM Conv., exclaims when asked how Saint Francis would evangelize to young people.  It’s not hard to tell that Rick is passionate about his work with FrancisCorps—an organization headquartered in Syracuse, New York.
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Follower of Saint Francis: Denis Grady, OFS

Image: Dick Vos. "When the Gospel became clear to me, I needed to express my faith with songs,” says Denis Grady, OFS. A Secular Franciscan for the past 10 years, Denis has always felt the pull of both music and Catholic faith in his life, but his response to God’s call to pursue music ministry didn’t happen automatically.
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Franciscan Respite for Refugees

(CNS photo/Eric Gay, pool via Reuters)  Clutching a plastic bag and holding on to her toddler for dear life, the weary mother pushes open the glass door and steps inside, eyes trained on the floor. She looks up in surprise when first one, then another of the people standing nearby shouts, “¡Bienvenidos!” and begins to applaud. 
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