Franciscan Spirit Blog

Lent with St. Clare: Friday after Ash Wednesday

Cross with a purple ribbon

“Gaze upon the mirror each day, O Queen and Spouse of Jesus Christ, and continually study your face within it.” —Fourth letter to Agnes of Prague

Most of the time we use mirrors to check our outward appearance. In her Testament, St. Clare made a number of references to mirrors: how she and her sisters should be a mirror to others, how others serve as a mirror back to them. What if we used our mirrors not only for our outward appearance, but also to reflect what lies within? What would we see? Would we be happy with what we observe staring back at us?

Gaze | Consider | Contemplate | Imitate

Just as a mirror reflects back what is given to it, so, too, the soul purified and illumined reflects the presence of God. It was not unusual to find the mirror symbol in the spiritual writings of women, especially the German mystics and Beguine women. However, Clare of Assisi used the concept of the mirror in a particular way, not to describe the soul as symbol of God but the human person as image of God.

Clare saw Christ crucified as the true image of God and the image in which we are created. Clare indicated that Christ is the image in whom Agnes would find the true meaning of her life in God.

What does it mean to say that Christ is the image in which we are created? And how do we relate to Christ as the “mirror image” of our lives? –from Clare of Assisi: A Heart Full of Love

Lent with St. Clare


St. Clare,
Help us to remember
that we are called to reflect Christ’s love.
May we always share our beauty
in spirit and action
with those around us.


15 thoughts on “Lent with St. Clare: Friday after Ash Wednesday”

  1. This new biography of Clare is a real gift to the Franciscan world. Sr. Margaret has made Clare accessible. Saint Clare was a great leader ahead of her time, fully focused on community and the common good. Thank you, Sister Margaret.

    1. There was no mention of Sister Ilia Delio, OSF book on Saint Clare : CLARE OF ASSISSI A HEART FULL OF LOVE.
      Thank You for listening to me.

  2. The problem is that we can’t see ourselves. In faith I believe that I am created in the image of God, and my reason for being is to live out that inward image of Christ in me.
    The challenge is to let go of the outward false image of the self and to become “no thing” other than the image of God; to manifest God on our world today. Easier said than done!
    But that’s the essence of the Cross. And as I reflect on Ash Wednesday; “you are dust”, I have to admit that The Holy Spirit has done some pretty transformative stuff “with dust.
    My hope is in the loving, merciful Lord Christ, who became incarnate to walk in me, with me, and through me to show me the way every day. Some days I receive a glimpse of that true self.

  3. What does it mean to say that Christ is the image in which we are created? And how do we relate to Christ as the “mirror image” of our lives? –from Clare of Assisi: A Heart Full of Love

    Those are some deep & profound questions St. Clare Ponders! Ones we should ask ourselves ,but are we really able to face the answers?
    On the surface I realize that Jesus wasn’t accepted in his own town, by his own people . Phrases like Isn’t he the Carpenters Son? Isn’t Mary his mother? So my first thought is I am like Jesus because others tend to associate me with my family first, I will resemble them and not stand out, I may not be listened to because people already think they know me;much like Jesus at the beginning of his ministry.
    Then I think I am like Jesus because we have our share of crosses to bear….But I quickly realize He has my back, he takes my burdens, mine will never be like Jesus burdens for he bore all so we won’t have to face that level of a burden
    Then I ask myself , what can I mirror back so others can see that Christ lives in my heart? My answers involve the fruits o the spirit, I need to mirror love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control…” Those fruits of the spirit along with mercy and forgiveness will help me relate to Jesus AND allow people to see into Jesus within me.

    1. Since I was a child, my heart has been filled with the desire to show “The Fruits of the Spirit”- love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control, mercy, and forgiveness to all humans. I wish to share beauty in spirit and action; to show, love, care, and compassion to people, animals, and the environment. My mirror image of God is in my heart, and all that I strive to do for others.

    1. Paul Kwame Anaman

      Hoping Life and example of our saints shall be mirror to get closer to our Jesus the Redeemer and savior of. Humanity. .St Clare pray for us .

  4. Today I am doing a prayer Service at a wake for a man who died in an auto accident. I pray that I may reflect the true Christ’s comfort to the suffering mourners.

    Please pray for them and for me.

    1. Eternal Rest Grant Unto Him O Lord,
      Let Perpetual Light Shine Upon him
      Mat the Soul of the faithfully departed,
      through the mercy of Christ ,rest in peace

  5. The old Baltimore catechism taught us this is a question and answer format: Question: ” Who made ME? Answer: God made ME to know, love and serve Him in this world. As we look at others, why don’t we see that God made ME in His image and likeness when “ME” doesn’t look like YOU. As Roman Catholics, this reflection on St Claire is so appropriate today. Do I see the face of God when I look in the mirror so that I can serve God according to His purpose for me. AND, do we see the face of God in our fellow parishioners at Mass? So, we can accept and respect them according to God’s purpose.

  6. Michael Fielbrandt

    St Clare, please intercede to our lord Jesus, that we want to work daily to reflect him and help others as well to love one another

  7. God sees us as what we could be provided we obey his ways….but if we could see this perfect image of ourselves….we would be
    grief stricken as to what we should be….thats why Christ died and gave us his unending mercy and love…. no matter how far we have
    strayed from that Image…..Lent gives us a opportunity to renew our walk towards Christ—-by spiritual reading; helping others and
    confessing our sins, short comings, bad habits, quirks that need to be addressed…if I am to change for the better…..

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