04 October 2006

Il Poverello

Today we honor il poverello, St. Francis of Assisi. Images that depict St. Francis talking to birds and other animals are ubiquitous. Beyond this appealing -- yet incomplete -- picture was a man who was an extraordinary visionary, knew great suffering, and who loved deeply the poor, chaste Christ whom him followed. Click here for a biography of il poverello.

There are at least two -- and perhaps more -- sisters in the necrology of our monastery whose first name in religion was "Assisium." As best we can conclude, this was to honor St. Francis of Assisi, the patron of our Holy Father, St. Francis de Sales. Due to our close proximity to the Jesuits, it is not surprising to find a "Sr. Ignatia" here and a "Sr. Loyola" there, as one walks the rows of our cemetery. In fact, we probably have almost as many permutations of Jesuit saint names as we do "de Chantals," "de Sales" and "Margaret Marys" -- but we are privileged to have a couple of our sisters named especially for the "Other St. Francis."

As we honor this man of prayer, peace and great vision, let us ask his intercession for peace and tranquility in our nations, families and parishes.

"Preach always. Use words when necessary."
St. Francis of Assisi

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