Feast of St. Francis

Feast of St. Francis October 4, 2003

Oct. 4 is the birthday, and feast day, of St. Francis of Assisi, who was born in 1182.

I don't know anyone who does not like St. Francis. What's there not to like? He loved everyone and everything and sought to live at peace with all of creation.

That all sounds wonderful now, of course, now that Francis has been dead for nearly eight centuries. At the time, of course, it got him in an enormous amount of trouble. During his lifetime, it was rather easy to find people who didn't like Francis of Assisi. Why? Because he loved everyone and everything and sought to live at peace with all creation.

That sort of thing will get you killed. Maybe even crucified.

"All things come from God," Francis said. "And of his own do we give him." This was, of course, part of the problem. People who believe they possess lots of wealth or power or righteousness don't really like being told that none of it is really theirs. Such talk rankles the wealthy, the powerful and — perhaps especially — the righteous.

Anyway, my favorite illustration of this teaching of Francis' — "of his own do we give him" — comes from C.S. Lewis' Mere Christianity:

I will tell you what it is really like. It is like a small child going to its father and saying, 'Daddy, give me sixpence to buy you a birthday present.' Of course, the father does, and he is pleased with the child's present. It is all very nice and proper, but only an idiot would think that the father is sixpence to the good on the transaction.

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  • none

    Nice quote. I’m not a Christian but C.S. Lewis was a truly stand-up guy.