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Friday, October 03, 2008

Saint Francis Day Friday 5

Today is the day that we remember and celebrate the life of St Francis of Assisi, here is a description of his early life:

Often named the Patron Saint of Animals and the Environment, there is much more to St Francis:

Saint Francis is called the little poor man of Assisi. He was born in the year 1182 in the town of Assisi in Italy. His father's name was Bernadone. Bernadone was a very wealthy merchant of Assisi. Francis was a very good-looking boy. He was merry and soft-hearted. So he had many friends. All the noble men's sons were his companions.

Francis was brought up in luxury and gaiety. He spent a considerable portion of his wealth in extravagant pleasures. He used to drink with the young princes of the land.

One day Francis was joking and laughing with his friends. A beggar came along crying for alms. Francis, who was soft-hearted, gave whatever he had in his pocket to the beggar. His companions mocked at him for his charitable act. Dispassion dawned in his heart. The sight of the beggar set him thinking about the poverty and misery of mundane life. He gave much money to the poor. His father thought that Francis was wasting his money and rebuked him.

Sometime after this, Francis was laid up in bed for many months on account of some serious disease. He was about to die. But the Lord saved him as he had to carry out a definite mission in his life. The nature of Francis was entirely changed. Francis prayed to the Lord for light and guidance as to his future. He had a vision of Lord Jesus. He made a strong determination to renounce his old way of living to tread a life of purity and to dedicate his life to the service of humanity.

As soon as Francis got well, he informed his parents of his determination. They were disappointed. They became angry with Francis. Francis gave up his old ways and habits and set up to serve God. He distributed clothes, goods and money to the poor. His father was very much annoyed towards his son. He said, "Is this the gratitude you show to me ? I laboured hard and amassed wealth. You are lavishly wasting it on these miserable wretches".

Francis' friends mocked at him and teased him. His father turned him out of the house. Francis lived like a beggar. His old friends even pelted him with stones and mud. He bore everything with patience. He wore a coarse dress and ate simple food.


Francis went on to travel from village to village preaching the love of God. He invited people to join him in his life of service if they were willing. Bernard, a rich man of Assisi, was very much attracted by the saintliness of Francis. He joined Francis. He was the first follower of Francis. He placed all his wealth at the altar of God. Eleven others also joined Francis. They distributed all their wealth to the poor. Francis and his followers went all over Italy preaching, teaching, healing and blessing wherever they went.

The gospel of kindness and love of Francis soon spread all over Europe and earned for him the name of St. Francis. People called him the little poor man of Assisi. He lived for ever in the hearts of all men.

St. Francis collected many followers and founded the Order of Mendicant Friars or Franciscans. The members of this Order have to take a vow of poverty, chastity, love and obedience.
St. Francis gave up his mortal coil in 1228.


I would like to dedicate this Friday Five to St Francis of Assisi.


1. Saint Francis experienced a life changing call, has anything in your journey so far challenged you to alter your lifestyle?


2. Francis experienced mocking and persecution, quite often in the comfortable west this is far from our experience. If you have experienced something like this how do you deal with it, if not how does it challenge you to pray for those whose experience is daily persecution?


3 .St Francis had female counterpart in St Clare, she was influenced by St Francis sermon and went on to found the Poor Clare's, like the Franciscans they depended on alms this was unheard of for women in that time, but she persisted and gained permission to found the order. How important are role models like St Clare to you? Do you have a particular female role model whose courage and dedication inspires you? If so share their story....

4. Francis loved nature and animals, how important is an expressed love of the created world to the Christian message today?

5. On a lighter note; have you ever led a service of blessing for animals, or a pet service, was it a success, did you enjoy it, and would you do it again?

No bonus question today- this is quite long enough!!!



Let us know in comments if you play. And for even more visits to your blog, post a direct link in your comment using the following formulation:<a href="the url of your blog post goes here">what you want the link to say goes here</a>
For a complete how-to, click here.

33 comments:

  1. Here's a shout out to Peace Bang and some musings on persecution...

    Deb

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  2. wow you two were quick!!!

    I played here

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  3. I decided to end my blogging hiatus today here

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  4. I played at my place and included a beautiful image of Saint Clare. Come and see!

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  6. Ok... I'll try again....
    I played here, it's our Feast of Title.

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  7. Just have time for some reads for now. Hope to play later.

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  8. :I played here!what you want the link to say goes here Thanks for the thought FF, Sally, and I will be back to read when I return from the animal hospital!

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  9. whoops. that turned out goofy, but the link works. lol!

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  10. I played. www.foraseason.blogspot.com

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  11. i wasn't going to play today... but sally this was too good to pass up!
    played

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  12. I may have picked the wrong week to skip these. This one was tough.
    This is my play.

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  13. Sorry, folks--I accidentally posted mine at the main blog for about one minute! Now it's up at my place.

    Thanks for a great Five, Sally!

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  15. I love St. Francis and his day! It is a gift!
    Here's my play.

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  16. I enjoyed this play today! Check it out at my place! (Sorry, links continue to be beyond my technical capability)

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  17. This play hit me in some deep places - which I skimmed here

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  18. I played! Better late than never! I am anxious to read everyone else's response, but it will take me til tomorrow morning--busy day!

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  20. Second try on posting this thought-provoking Friday Five!

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  21. Been gone all day...still busy...so no Friday Five for me today, but I hope to come back and read later.

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  22. It's late, but I finally had a chance to play here cuz it just doesn't seem like Friday without it!

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  23. Neurologist appt for DS, Johnny Appleseed Festival, and high school homecoming leave me no time to play this weekend, but I'll peek in on others as I've got time!

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  24. A little late this week, but the first chance I've had to respond in several.

    I really liked this one. Thank you Sally.

    Find me here

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