Remembering St. Francis of Assisi

FrancisSmallforTour blog

Saint Francis of Assisi died 787 years ago today, and yet he seems more alive than ever despite the passage of time. In the Catholic tradition, this anniversary marks the "Feast Day of St. Francis." Remembering the champions who have gone before seems an appropriate tradition and one which Protestants lose out on. Francis of Assisi is certainly one whom Christians of all traditions ought to know and celebrate.I lived in Assisi when I wrote my book about St. Francis and came to love the … [Read more...]

Bedeviled by (In)Justice

BishopTutu

I continue to be fascinated by the unending spate of televised sensational trials, re-trials, detective stories and mysteries “based upon actual events” that account for a robust portion of primetime viewing (myself included). I am wondering if the reason for this fascination resides in the invisible theme that connects these cases: the irrevocable sentiment that “justice must be served.”More surprising, at least for me, is the number of such cases that involve people of a clearly defined and … [Read more...]

A Scandalous, Tumultuous Palm Sunday

Fr and Cl looking up

Palm Sunday was the day chosen by Saint Francis of Assisi (1182-1226) when Francis' beloved Clare of Assisi (1192 - 1258) would sneak out at night, run the fields below the town, leaving her family forever to follow Francis till the day she died. Both Francis and Clare were revolutionaries in this regard: he, by championing the first monastic order for women; she, by running through the fields to claim it. Rather than marry into wealth and royalty, as was her destiny as part of the house of … [Read more...]

The Friar Who Inspired the Pope: The Original Francis

Francis3 Changed

Today the Installation Mass of the new Pope Francis officially inaugurated his papacy. He chose the name Francis, he said, because upon his election, his friend, Brazilian Cardinal Claudio Hummes, “hugged me. He kissed me. He said, ‘don't forget about the poor.’ And that's how in my heart came the name Francis of Assisi, the man of the poor. The man of peace. The man who loved and cared for creation.The man who gives us this spirit of peace, the poor man." It is altogether sensible that a … [Read more...]

Hail the Poets! Salute the Lunatics!

PoetandLunaticsCover

Welcome to my world! It is a glorious, upside-down landscape where clouds are mountains and trees hang downward as if baptized in wide blue sea. Can you see it? Take your time. If you need to, stand on your head.The blog title arises from one of G.K. Chesterton’s most astonishing and yet little known novels titled The Poet and the Lunatics (Darwen Finlayson Limited, 1929,1962). The book’s protagonist is an artist named Gabriel Gale, who steps in to assist local police in solving a bizar … [Read more...]


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