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Saint Francis and Poverty

Saint Francis and Poverty

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  • ISBN-13: 9781484921753
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
  • Release Date: May 09, 2013
  • Pages: 92 pages
  • Dimensions: 0.21 x 9.00 x 6.00 inches


Let us consider this: “It need hardly be said that the life of St. Francis was a revelation of that ideal poverty which he so fondly styled his Lady Poverty. She it was who made a hero of him, and gave him his place in the religious history of the world. One may say, perhaps, that St. Francis threw a halo of poetry around poverty; but poverty could never have shone with beauty even beside St. Francis if it had not the secret of beauty within itself. The special grace of the Saint's life was, in fact, just this-that he was enabled to understand the moral and spiritual value of poverty; to see a great soul-liberty where others could detect only privation and loss. “For St. Francis did not tolerate poverty as something in spite of which a man may be noble and spiritual; he loved and reverenced poverty as a sacramental means of attaining to the higher and larger life. Poverty was to him the Life Beautiful, the mother of virtue, the entrance to eternal joy. One must grasp this fact if one is to have any right comprehension of the life and mission of St. Francis. Dante, Sassetta, and the author of the medieval allegory I have referred to, did grasp this fact, and they expressed it each in his own way. And if, in the controversies which arose after St. Francis's death concerning the Rule of poverty, the discussions seem frequently to turn on legalistic forms, and to reveal little of the inspiring idealism of the Saint, yetthese controversies had their origin, on one side at least, in the desire to maintain the new life which St. Francis had found.”

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