Wednesday, October 04, 2006


Today is the Feast of

St. Francis of Assisi.

I think the

Prayer of St. Francis

is especially appropriate

in these troubled times.

Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master,
grant that I may not
so much seek
to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to
to be loved as to love;
for it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are
born to eternal life.

Saint Francis had some important firsts. He experienced the first recorded incident of the stigmata--or the wounds of Christ manifested in his own body.

He also made the first nativity scene or creche. He used live people and animals to depict the birth of Christ on Christmas Eve. Today nativity scenes are common around the world.

St. Francis was a reformer in his time who stayed with the Church, however troubling and corrupt parts of it may have been. He can be an inspiration to all of us on so many levels today.


Darrell said...

Thank you for this post. I needed to read this today.

Anonymous said...

Hi there, This will always make me think of the song we sang in high school. That and the St. Francis poster my Aunt had hanging in her enclosed porch. When our house caught fire it stopped right at that poster, as if St. Francis, himself, had ordered it to stop. I, personally, believe he did.

Staying in Balance said...

You're welcome, Darrell!

Lifeisgreat--wow--another fire-stopped-by-God story! I don't think I knew that one.

(P.S.--I almost put "Ah, ah, ah, ah" at the end of the prayer, but that wouldn't have been appropriate! ;)

Anonymous said...

Do you know anything about the picture you chose for this post named "cross of St. Damian"?
I saw it yesterday in a chapel in Brazil.
Nice blog!

Staying in Balance said...

Thanks, Theophilus. The San Damiano cross, which is pictured here, is the crucifix from which Jesus spoke to Saint Francis, saying, "Rebuild my Church." At first, Francis took it literally and collected stones to rebuild the ruined church of San Damiano. Then he realized that Christ meant the Church as a whole. St. Francis did his good work inside the institution of the Church, always being respectful of even corrupt members of the clergy.

Dymphna's favorite quotes

"Slavery ended in medieval Europe only because the church extended its sacraments to all slaves and then managed to impose a ban on the enslavement of Christians (and of Jews). Within the context of medieval Europe, that prohibition was effectively a rule of universal abolition. "— Rodney Stark

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