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Franciscan Spirit Blog

Lent with St. Francis: True Prophets

Mar 8, 2021
Lent with St. Francis: True Prophets

Monday of the Third Week of Lent

2 Kings 5:1–15a;
Psalm 42:2–3; 43:3–4;
Luke 4:24–30

“And he said, ‘Truly I tell you, no prophet is accepted in the prophet’s home town.’” —Luke 4:24


Everyone in Assisi knew Francis Bernardone. Whether he was leading the other young men of the town in nightly revels or leading a small group of Lesser Brothers in prayer and penitence, he couldn’t be missed—or ignored. His biographers give us a glimpse into his family’s response to his conversion:

When his father saw him in this pitiful plight, he was filled with sorrow, for he had loved him very dearly; he was both grieved and ashamed to see his son half dead from penance and hardships, and whenever they met, he cursed Francis. When the servant of God heard his father’s curses, he took as his father a poor and despised outcast and said to him: “Come with me and I will give you the alms I receive; and when I hear my father cursing me, I shall turn to you saying: ‘Bless me, Father’; and then you will sign me with the cross and bless me in his place.” And when this happened, the beggar did indeed bless him; and Francis turned to his father, saying: “Do you not realize that God can give me a father whose blessing will counter your curses?” Many people, seeing his patience in suffering scorn, were amazed and upheld him admiringly.

We often find it difficult to recognize the true prophets in our midst. We dismiss them as crackpots and extremists because they make us uncomfortable. Francis might give us the inspiration we need to pause and listen to the people around us and, in their voices, hear the voice of God.


Prayer

The person who practices one virtue and does not
offend against the others possesses all.
The person who offends against one virtue,
possesses none and violates all.
Amen.


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Comments

Submitted by Julie Monahan (not verified) on Mon, 03/08/2021 - 07:48 AM

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The prayer really isn't a prayer - it's a fact and tells us who we should be praying for - the second person needs our prayers a lot more than the first.

Submitted by Charles (not verified) on Mon, 03/08/2021 - 08:04 AM

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Who is the biographer you are quoting in your Lent with Saint Francis series? I would like to purchase that book. Thank you !

Submitted by Dr Eileen Quin… (not verified) on Mon, 03/08/2021 - 09:52 AM

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When I reflect on the times I heard the voice of God, it is so real and powerful I am in awe. This takes place in very different ways- the voice of God in a student I taught, the voice of God in the faith formation commission, the voice of God in the person I am having lunch with, the voice of God in our friends and enemies, the voice of God in our bishops and priests. These are just a few of the places I hear God's words. He wants us to find the deep-seated goodness in all and use that goodness in our own salvation and the salvation of others.

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