Franciscan Spirit Blog

Lent with St. Clare: First Saturday

Purple flowers

“Our labor here is brief, but the reward is eternal.”
—Letter to Ermentrude of Bruges

One of the mistakes most of us make is to think that we always have enough time. We put off things we should do, promising to get to them later. What we don’t think about, though, is the possibility that there might not be a later. St. Clare died at fifty-nine, a rather young age compared to what we’ve come to expect today. But look at how determined she was in her calling and everything she accomplished during those years! With that in mind, we should ask ourselves what we are doing with our time to help build up the kingdom of God.

Gaze | Consider | Contemplate | Imitate

In a category by itself is the account in the fifteenth chapter of the Fioretti. It describes a shared meal that Francis arranged for Clare at the Portiuncula. The narrative portrays him as eager to allow such a reunion in the place where she first entered into their company. She and her companion arrive and their conversation centers on the gifts of grace which both have received.

The ardor of this exchange is so intense that the villagers nearby believe they see flames enveloping the small church. They rush to save the place only to find Francis, Clare, and companions fully caught up in this divine discourse and aflame with God’s love.

Since this account comes from a set of stories written long after both were dead, it is often treated as a mere folktale. Yet, its telling indicates that years after they lived, this spirit of a profound mutual delight in God’s gifts was fondly remembered. It was the heart of a friendship of grace. It was a story worth saving. —from Light of Assisi: The Story of Saint Clare

lent with saint clare


St. Clare,
May your life serve
as a guide for us as we seek
ways to contribute to the building
up of the kingdom of heaven.


11 thoughts on “Lent with St. Clare: First Saturday”

  1. I thought justice Fr Hennings. That I had to seek God in lent, his year I am finding in journey with God daily, I know realize how much he truly love me. How faithful he has been to me, I truly see his goodness, his mercy never fails me. My heart wants to sing of his goodness. Thank you so much for this beautiful time of reflection.

  2. Our labor here is brief but our reward is eternal. In reading this I was directed to Luke 16 19-31.The rich man and Lazarus. Father help us all to live our life’s with loving kindness.
    G-d Bless.

    1. We named our Fraternity, El Encuentro, The Encounter, after this moment. They were engulfed by the flaming fires of the Holy Spirit. A truly beautiful moment for them both ❤️

  3. “Our labor here is brief, but the reward is eternal.”
    —Letter to Ermentrude of Bruges

    St. Clare did leave this life early at age 59, but she packed those years with so much good. Her time was well spent on this earth!
    What will my life say about my time spent here? Will I have enough good works in my heart ,will the evidence of a life well lived be reflected in my broken down body? Or like an athlete will it break down through fun and sport of life? It matters to God how our broken down bodies came to that condition. Lent with St. Clare has been teaching me so much,but hopefully I will be able to change my ways asI internalize the lessons learned here.

    St. Clare I ask you to intercede for me to our Lord for more time here so I can learn, grow, and do the good work God intended during my lifetime. My body has broken down already in so many ways and with a chronic pain condition I feel unable to rewrite my story without the help of your intervention! Please hear and bring my petitions for our Lord and Savior so that my soul can be ignited by the flames that you and St. Francis shared in your lifetime. If I can just fan the embers that are left in my soul with
    the flames of friendship and fortitude both of you shared then my life won’t be waisted when my time is up! Amen

  4. I would if liked to have learned more if the, “Gaze, Consider, Contemplate, Imitate,” at the beginning of today’s reflection. Help us to understand and to learn of such things, and to put them into practice.

  5. I would rather go on my lenten journey with my Lord Jesus since ì have entrusted to Him with my heart soul life body and my lòvè àll mý mèŕits inďùlģèñçès ì gave to my Blessed Mother in Heaven to use on the souls in Pugatory on the unrepentant sinners and then most important the very young children all over the world who are suffering from war hunger ànd no doctors or medicine loss of parents siblings and are all alone and are too young to know why as Jesus once said suffer the little children to come to Me

  6. Maria Amélia Carreira

    I am living in St. Clare’s of Assissi Convent for elderly Sisters in our Franciscan Hospitaller of the I. Conception Congregation. I am 90 and St. Clare died at 59. God has His plan for our mission on Mother Earth. With God’s Grace I feel to have been transformed (transfigured) getting to know myself better. The mystery of CHRIST is so powerful! His Mercy has been a light for my step by step. My enlarged family of brothers and sisters keeps increasing. God’s Grace is amazing!

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