call me Francis

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Looking right I notice today is the day celebrating Francis of Assisi.

Saint Francis in Prayer by Zurbaran

Now the odd thing is that I don’t know all that much about Francis. I’ve never read a biography. I’ve only read bits and pieces here and there about him. What I’ve picked up is from scattered sources usually only indirectly related to this saint.

This is odd because he is, after all, one of the premier spiritual leaders in history, a leader who emphasized and resonated with nature. Nature is infused in his spirituality, along with a strong devotion couple with freedom and imagination.

So, I don’t have a lot of particular insights to add about Francis today. Only that he is clearly someone I need to get to know. Thus the feast day has done its service for me by reminding me of those who have gone before and done so much. By reminding me that I need to know such men and women if I ever think to be a worthwhile Christian myself. We can blaze new trails but God also expects that we know the trails blazed before us, so as to fill our minds with good counsel and heavenly wisdom. It is also a chance to step out of time and become friends with one with whom I will share eternity.

3 Responses to “call me Francis”

  1. sonja Says:

    Here are some bits I know about him. I don’t know if they belong to the realm of fact or legend. My children read some books about St. Francis when we got to that period in history a year or so ago. And as their books told it he was raised the first son of a wealthy land owner. At some point (I forget when) he became convicted of the need to take a vow of poverty, which he did in the midst of the town square. In fact, he renounced his familial ties and gave his father back all of his clothing and jewelry and left the town square naked. At least, that’s what that particular children’s book said he did. I found this book in our local community library so I think it might hold some water. I’ve always been fascinated by that part about leaving all his clothes behind. That’s such a radical act.

  2. sonja Says:

    Oh, and I forgot to say, I’ve always wondered what his father and mother must have been thinking. His biography would make an interesting movie.

  3. Patrick Says:

    His biography would make an interesting movie. In the same vein as Luther, which had both the story and the faith.

    I love that story about leaving his clothes behind. That is commitment. I bet it’s true too. Folks who end up having the impact that Francis had generally have made extremely solid breaks, meaning that they have no way back during times of frustration or depression. Funny story to include in a children’s book too.

    Methinks I’m going to get some biographies on him, and maybe some screenwriting software. 🙂