"Preach the Gospel at all times, and when necessary, use words."

A special "Thank you!"
Goes out to
John Michael Talbot
for giving us permission
to use his song on our
"Come to the Quiet"
You Tube Video
_______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

St. Francis Visits Jerusalem

In 1219 Francis left, together with a few companions, for Egypt. Received by the sultan Melek-el-Kamel, Francis challenged the muslim priests to a test of true religion by fire. But they retreated. When Francis proposed to enter the fire first and, if he left the fire unharmed, the sultan would have to recognize Christ as the true God, the sultan allowed him to preach to his subjects.

On 5 November 1219 Francis helped the crusaders to capture Damietta. At Saint Jean d'Acre, the capital of what remained of the Kingdom of Jerusalem, he rejoined the brothers Elia and Pietro Cattini. Francis then most probably visited the holy places in Palestina in 1220.

Sweet Melody Of Spirit

When the sweetest melody of spirit would flame up in his heart, he would release it by singing in French, and the trickle of divine inspiration which his inner ear had caught would begin to overflow like a minstrel's song.

At times, as I have seen with my own eyes, he would pick up a stick from the ground and, holding it on his left arm, would draw across another stick bent by means of a string, as if he were playing a violin. Then pretending to play, he would sing in French the praises of the Lord.

Celano, Second Life

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Spouces Of Christ

We are spouces when our faithful souls are wed to Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit. We are brothers and sisters when we do the will of his Father who is in heaven.

Letter to All the Faithful, Second Version

Sunday, May 28, 2006

St. Francis Addresses St. Anthony

I am pleased that you are teaching sacred theology to the brothers, so long as this kind of study, as our Rule has it, does not extinguish the spirit of prayer and devotion.

St. Francis's Letter to St. Anthony

Saturday, May 27, 2006

The Rule Of The Lesser Brothers

In the name of the Lord begins the Life of the Lesser Brothers! The Rule and Life of the Lesser Brothers is this: to observe the Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ by living in obedience, without anything of their own, and in chastity.

Rule 1223

* St. Francis called his friars, or brothers, "lesser," to locate them in society among the little people, the poor and lowly, who were called "minores," "lesser ones," in medieval Italy. The more affluent, or the nobility, were called "majores," or "greater ones."

Friday, May 26, 2006

Mission Of The Lesser Brothers

The truth is that the Lord chose the Lesser Brothers and sent them forth for the welfare and salvation of all souls everywhere. And not only will they be received in lands of the faithful but in lands of unbelievers as well. And as long as they fulfill what they have promised the Lord, he will take care of their needs whether they be in the lands of those who do not believe or of those who do.

Writings of Leo, Rufino, and Angelo

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Sister Lark

Sister Lark has a hood like a religious and is a humble bird who gladly goes in search of any little grain, and even if she finds something in the garbage, she picks it out and eats it. In flight she sweetly praises God like good religious who, detached from worldly things, turn ever toward heaven and who long only to praise God. The Lark's garb, her plumage, is the color of the earth. Thus she offers religious an example of how not to wear elegant, flashy clothes, but moderately priced things, of the color of earth, the humblest of the elements.

Mirror of Perfection

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Believe Even When Tempted

Once, for several years, St. Francis suffered serious temptation of spirit that caused him great anguish. Then one day when he was praying at St. Mary of the Angels, he heard in spirit a voice: "Francis, if you have faith, even if it is as small as a mustard seed, you will say to the mountain, move, and it will move." The saint responded: "Lord, what is the mountain you would want me to move?" And again he heard, "The mountain is your temptation." Then weeping, Francis said, "Let it be unto me, Lord, as you have said." And immediately the temptation was removed, and he was made free and wholly at peace within.

Celano - Second Life

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

St. Clare On Poverty

Since the great and good Lord, on entering the Virgin's womb, chose to look despised, needy, and poor in this world, so that people in dire poverty and deprivation and in absolute need of heavenly nourishment might become rich in him by possessing the kingdom of heaven, then you who have chosen poverty should rejoice and be glad!

First Letter of St. Clare to Blessed Agnes of Prague

Monday, May 22, 2006

The Bridal Ring

Temptation overcome is the ring by which the Lord espouses the soul of his servant to himself.

Celano, Second Life

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Heralding The Praises Of God

Every evening a herald should proclaim or use some other signal to announce to all the people that they are to render praise and thanks to the Lord God Almighty.

Letter to the Rulers of the People

Friday, May 19, 2006

Il Cantico del Sole (The Canticle of Brother Sun)

Laudato si, misignore, per quelli ke perdanano
per lo tuo amore
et sostengo infirmitata
et tribulatione.

A Translation:

All praise be yours, my Lord, through those who
grant pardon
For love of you; through those who endure
Sickness and trial.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

St. Francis Speaks To The Demons

"Do what you want to me, wicked and deceitful spirits, for you can only do what the Lord allows you to do. Therefore I am happy to suffer everything that God lets you do to me."

St. Bonaventure - Major Life

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Absorbed In God Alone

Above everything else St. Francis desired "to be gone and to be with Christ" (Ph 1:23). That was why he was so concerned with freeing himself from every worldly care: lest his peace of mind be disturbed by the taint of what was mere dust. He made himself insensible to external noise and controlled his external senses and desires so that he could live absorbed in God alone.

Celano, First Life

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Love Your Enemies

The Lord says in the Gospel, "Love your enemies..." (Mt 5:44). You do in fact love your enemy when you do not brood over the evil another has done to you, but grieve instead over the sin on another's soul, while continuing to act with love for the love of God.

Admonition 9

Monday, May 15, 2006

Prophecy Concerning St. Francis's Body

One day, when Francis lay ill in the bishop's residence in Assisi, a spiritual brother said to him with a smile, as if joking, "How much do you think you should charge the Lord for this sackcloth of yours? For much precious cloth and drapery will one day cover your little body which now is clothed in sackcloth!" And indeed, at that time St. Francis's cowl was patched with sackcloth, and his habit was all of sackcloth as well.

Then St. Francis, or rather the Holy Spirit in him, answered with the words filled with fervor and joy, "You have spoken the truth; what you've said will be fulfilled to the praise and glory of my God."

Mirror of Perfection

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Prefer Insult To Praise

For his part, Francis preferred insult to praise, because he knew that insult leads to self-improvement, praise to downfall. And so when people praised his merits and holiness, he would command one of the brothers to assault his ears with phrases that humiliated and mortified him. And when the brother, although unwilling, called him uncouth and mercenary, unskilled and useless, Francis would reply, his face shining with his heart's joy, "The Lord bless you, dearest son, for you have spoken the very truth. These are the kind of words that suit well the son of Peter Bernardone."

St Bonaventure, Major Life

Saturday, May 13, 2006

He Humbles Himself Every Day

See, every day He humbles himself as He did when, from His royal throne, He came into the womb of the Virgin; every day He comes to us with the same humility; every day He decends from His Father's bosom into the hands of the priest at the altar.

Admonition 1

Friday, May 12, 2006

Patience And Humility

"Blessed are the peacemakers; they shall be recognized as children of God." (Mt 5:9).

Servant of God, you do not know how much patience and humility you really have as long as everything goes along according to your own satisfaction. But when the time comes that instead of receiving your due, you get just the opposite, as much patience and humility as you have then is what you really have, and no more.

Admonition 13

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Brother Body

In eating and drinking, in sleeping and satisfying the other necessities of the body, you should take the measure of your own physical tolerance, so that Brother Body doesn't rebel.

Mirror of Perfection

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Animals Serve God Better Than People Do

Consider, O human, the wondrous dignity God has conferred upon you. He created and formed your body in the image of his Beloved Son, and your soul in his own likeness. Still, all creatures under heaven serve and know and obey their Creator in their own way better than you do.

Admonition 5

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Two Small Coins Of St. Francis

Christ's Poor One, Francis, possessed nothing but two small coins (cf. Mark 12:42) which he could dispose of with largesse and charity: his body and his soul. But those two mites he offered to God continually, for love of Christ; he seemed always to be immolating his body with the rigor of fasting and his soul with the flame of desire: his body, a holocaust outside in the court of the temple; his soul, incense offered in the inner temple.

St Bonaventure

Monday, May 08, 2006

Willingly Embrace Shame

Blessed are those servants who are not quick to excuse themselves and who humbly put up with shame and reproach for sins they are not guily of.

Admonition 22

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Show Me When I Am Your Servant

I prayed that God would deign to show me when it is I am His servant and when not, for I want nothing else but to be His servant. And the Lord answered most graciously, "Know that you are truly my servant when you think, do, and say what is holy."

Mirror of Perfection

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Value Work

I want all my friars to work and to humbly occupy themselves with good works, so that we might be less a burden to people and not stray toward laziness of heart and tongue. And whoever does not know a trade, should learn one.

Mirror of Perfection

Friday, May 05, 2006

Pray For God's Mercy

Enlightened by the Holy Spirit through a prophetic spirit, Francis saw the great things God was going to accomplish through him and his Order. But when he considered how inadequate he was and how meager was his virtue, he cried out in prayer to God that in His mercy, without which human frailty can do nothing, He would supply, help, and fill up what was lacking in Francis.

Little Flowers of St. Francis

Thursday, May 04, 2006

"Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you."

With every fiber of his being, Francis burned with love for the Sacrament of the Body of the Lord. It left him overcome with wonder for so great a condescension and merciful love. He was said to be disconsolate if, even once, he could not hear daily Mass, even if it was impossible to do so. He received communion often and with such devotion as to make others experience a like devotion. He rendered every reverence to so venerable a sacrament, offering the sacrifice of his whole self; and when he received the Immolated Lamb of God, he immolated his own spirit in that fire which was always burning on the altar of his heart.


Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Storing Up The Sin Of Another

No matter how someone else sins, if you let yourself be upset or angered over it, except for charity's sake, you store up for yourself - like a treasure - the sin of the other. But, servant of God, if you do not become angry or indignant over someone else, you are living justly and poorly, that is, without claiming anything for your own.


Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Reverence For Women

Once St. Francis was giving a mother and her virgin daughter the comfort of the word of God. All the while he spoke, he never looked at them, and so when they left, his companion said to him, "Father, that holy woman and her virgin dughter came to you with such devotion; why didn't you look at them?" But the holy father answered, "Who would not be afraid to look upon the bride of Christ? A whole sermon was preached with my eyes and face when they looked at me, but not I at them."


Monday, May 01, 2006

From The Canticle Of Brother Sun

Laudato si, misignore, per sora luna ele stelle:
in celu lai formate clarite
et pretiose et belle.

Laudate si, misignore, per frate vento,
et per aere et nubilo
et sereno et omne tempo
per loquale a le tue creature
aid sustentamento.


How beautiful is he, how radiant in all his
Of you, Most High, he bears the likeness.

All Praise be yours, my Lord, through Sister Moon
and Stars;
In the heavens you have made them, bright
And precious and fair.