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|About||Saint Francis of Assisi (born in Assisi, Italy, ca. 1182; died there on October 3, 1226) founded the Franciscan Order or "Friars Minor".|
The Charism of St. Francis
To speak of the charism of St. Francis, we must first clarify what is charism? Charism is a general term that indicates a personal gift of the Spirit used for the good of the Church. When a charism is approved by the Pope, the respective charism is said to participate in the official mission of the Church to make Christ present in the world. Seeking approving of his gift, St. Francis went to the Pope and Cardinals, but was met with hesitancy. Saint Francis' desire to live out the gospel life was thought of by some as some thing too difficult to attain. Eventually, all finally realized that by denying St. Francis' request they would denying the opportunity to imitate Christ. The entire Franciscan family has joined St. Francis in the common effort to aid and support the life and mission of the Church.
The initial difficulty that St. Francis encountered is not some thing specific to St. Francis as almost all true charisms at first run into some opposition one way or the other. A faithful person receives a charism, the gift of the Holy Spirit, when he/she opens himself/herself to God's grace. It is generally understood that the opportunity is given for a radical conversion and painful turning point in one's life. All saints have gone through this. At a minimum, the Holy Spirit usually puts every founder to a hard test of anti-conformity, which to their contemporaries, these chosen individuals seem strange or unusual.
In conjunction with the radical conversion is a profound evangelical experience, full of light and confidence. This prompts one to leave everything in order to conform one's life with the light that has been received. The charism urges one to bring to others the benefits of his/her own discovery. One feels a vital need to communicate the gift one has so freely received (1.Cor. 9: 16). The result is a new promulgation of the Gospel, a new vision, something that may even be particular to the historical moment.
Charism can be a
Francis of Assisi
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Saint Francis of Assisi (born in Assisi, Italy, ca. 1182; died there on October 3, 1226) founded the Franciscan Order or "Friars Minor". He is the patron saint of animals and the environment
Boyhood and early manhood
Born Giovanni Bernardone, commonly known as Francesco. His father Pietro, was a wealthy cloth merchant. Of his mother, Pica, little is known. Francis was one of several children.
The name of Francesco ("the French-man"), by which his baptismal name was soon altogether replaced, has many conflicting explanations to its origin. One claims it to have been given him soon after his birth by his father, returning to Assisi from a trip to France; according to another account it was due to his early acquisition of the French language. But perhaps the most probable explanation comes from his infatuation with french literature, particularly fascinated with the Troubadors. It is interesting to note the similarity between the lifetyle of the troubadors, free of all worldly possessions, the antithesis of the life his father wanted for him--and that which he would one day follow himself in his ministry.
Rebellious toward his father's business and pursuit of wealth, Francis would spend most of his youth lost in books (ironically his father's wealth did afford his son an excellent education, and he became fluent in reading several languages including Latin) or drinking and enjoying the company of his many friends, who were usually the sons of nobles. Early on, he would display disillusionment toward the world that surrounded him, which is shown in the story of the beggar, which begins when one day he found himself yet again out having fun with his friends, and a beggar came along and asking for alms. While his friends ignored his cries, Francis gave the man everything he had in his pockets. His friends quickly chided and mocked him for his stupidity, and when he got home, his father scolded him in a rage.
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To the Bishops
Priests and Deacons
Men and Women religious
and all People of Good Will
on the Value and Inviolability
of Human Life
1. The Gospel of life is at the heart of Jesus' message. Lovingly received day after day by the Church, it is to be preached with dauntless fidelity as "good news" to the people of every age and culture.
At the dawn of salvation, it is the Birth of a Child which is proclaimed as joyful news: "I bring you good news of a great joy which will come to all the people; for to you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord" (Lk 2:10-11). The source of this "great joy" is the Birth of the Saviour; but Christmas also reveals the full meaning of every human birth, and the joy which accompanies the Birth of the Messiah is thus seen to be the foundation and fulfilment of joy at every child born into the world (cf. Jn 16:21).
When he presents the heart of his redemptive mission, Jesus says: "I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly" (Jn 10:10). In truth, he is referring to that "new" and "eternal" life which consists in communion with the Father, to which every person is freely called in the Son by the power of the Sanctifying Spirit. It is precisely in this "life" that all the aspects and stages of human life achieve their full significance.