Saint Bonaventure

Christ and Saint Francis

While the Vicar of Christ listened attentively to a parable told by Francis and its interpretation, he was quite amazed and recognised without a doubt that Christ had spoken in this man.  But he also confirmed a vision he had recently received from heaven, that, as the Divine Spirit indicated, would be fulfilled in this man.  He saw in a dream, as he recounted, the Lateran basilica almost ready to fall down.  A little poor man, small and scorned, was propping it up with his own back bent so that it would not fall.  “I’m sure,” he said, “he is the one who will hold up Christ’s Church by what he does and what he teaches.”  Because of this, filled with exceptional devotion, he bowed to the request in everything and always loved Christ’s servant with special love.  Then he granted what was asked and promised even more.  He approved the rule, gave them a mandate to preach penance, and had small tonsures given to all the lay brothers, who were accompanying the servant of God, so that they could freely preach the word of God.

                                                                                     Saint Bonaventure

Today is the feast day of Saint Francis of Assisi.  Of all the saints, I have thought that Saint Francis attempted most closely to follow in the footsteps of Christ, and that is why he was granted that mysterious sign of love, the stigmata.  G.K. Chesterton tells us how the life of Saint Francis helped to illuminate aspects of the earthly life of His Master: ']);" class="more-link">Continue reading

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