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A6 - Saint Francis Altar


This Altar is located on the South Side of the Church.
We often refer to this area as the St. Francis Chapel due to
the wrought  Iron Grate which encloses this Altar.

Saint Francis of Assisi
b.1182 d.1226  Feastday: October 4

Italian mystic and preacher, who founded the Franciscans. Born in Assisi, Italy, he appears to have received little formal education, even though his father was a wealthy merchant. As a young man, Francis led a worldly, carefree life. He performed charities among the lepers and began working on the restoration of dilapidated churches. Francis's change of character and his expenditures for charity angered his father, who legally disinherited him. Francis then discarded his rich garments for a bishop's cloak and devoted the next three years to the care of outcasts and lepers in the woods of Mount Subasio.

He gathered round him the 12 disciples who became the original brothers of his order, later called the First Order; they elected Francis superior. In 1212 he received a young, well-born nun of Assisi, Clare, into Franciscan fellowship; through her was established the Order of the Poor Ladies (the Poor Clares), later the Second Order of Franciscans.  Francis went to the Holy Land, staying there until 1220. On his return home he found dissension in the ranks of the friars and resigned as superior, spending the next few years in planning what became the Third Order of Franciscans, the tertiaries.

In September 1224, after 40 days of fasting, Francis was praying upon Monte Alverno when he felt pain mingled with joy, and the marks of the crucifixion of Christ, the stigmata, appeared on his body. Francis was carried back to Assisi, where his remaining years were marked by physical pain and almost total blindness. He was canonized in 1228.