Francis of Assisi: The Christmas Crèche Comes to Life

St. Francis adoring the Christ Child (Fabrizio Santafede 1560-1623)

A well-researched biography of Saint Francis of Assisi must of necessity resound with the same two overriding themes: his deep, intense love for and devotion to his Savior, Jesus Christ; and his commitment to a radical living out of his Master’s example of poverty.

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Saint Francis of Assisi: Far More than a Garden Statue Figure

Saint Francis of Assisi (1182 – 1226) – we know all about him. The gentle garden figure, bird perched on his shoulder, rabbits at his feet; the peace prayer hymn we sing at Mass; his Canticle of the Sun, praising God for all facets of Creation; the lover of poverty simply clad in a rough brown robe.

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Saint Francis of Assisi Meets Our Lady of the Angels

The original Portiuncula is located within the Papal Basilica of Saint Mary of the Angels in Assisi (Wikicommons)

On the Franciscan calendar, August 2nd marks a very special Marian feast day, one which commemorates the remarkable connection between Our Lady of the Angels and Saint Francis of Assisi. The story behind this connection is well worth telling.

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Pope Benedict XVI on the Origin and Meaning of Christmas

It was about this time last year when Pope Benedict XVI gave a brilliant reflection on the history and meaning of Christmas, saying that only those who welcome Jesus with a child’s heart can recognize “the Lord in the Child” who comes to us on Christmas Day.

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Pope Exhorts Faithful to be “True Guardians of Life and Creation”

On the same day that representatives from over 190 countries met in South Africa to tackle the issue of climate change, Pope Benedict XVI addressed a group of Italian teenagers, urging them – and all of the faithful – to be “true guardians of life and creation”.

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