Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Meditation on St. Francis of Assisi

by Pope John XXIII

Featured eBook

    Document Information

  • Description:
    Blessed John XXIII provides a small meditation on St. Francis of Assisi and his love for "Lady Poverty." The Pope exhorts all of us to imitate this saint in detaching ourselves from the world.
  • Larger Work:
    Prayers and Devotions from Pope John XXIII
  • Pages: 223-224
  • Publisher & Date:
    Grosset & Dunlap, Inc., 1967

Francis was called "another Christ", in the sense that he showed in his life and conduct the very pith and kernel of Our Lord's teaching.

We all have to fight against the lusts of the flesh. Many people also desire material wealth and dream of money, but St. Francis teaches every one of us, whatever our social condition may be, to fight against "the lust of the eyes", which is full of deceit and vanity. The wealth of Christian life does not consist in money and all its cares and demands. To some extent it is necessary for our very existence, but we must not lose our hearts to it. In the presence of his father and of the Bishop, Francis gave up everything, even the clothes he was wearing -- such was his love for poverty.

When Providence has enabled a man to possess more than sufficient for his needs, he is inviting him to redistribute his wealth, to help the poor, and to contribute to the great works in aid of human brotherhood. This commandment is valid for all, and particularly for those who have dedicated their lives to God's service.

Therefore, whoever has more abundant wealth must give more generously, giving also for those who are unable to do so. The precept applies not only to two brothers, two families or two towns, but to the whole world. Sometimes a rich man may feel powerful, and boast of his resources, and shut his eyes and ears to the poverty of others who are condemned to live in want -- whereas true brotherly feeling would see to it that the poor had at least what he needed to live. If we wish to find a little spiritual joy on this earth we must follow after St. Francis, who imitated the example of Christ, who even worked miracles in order to feed the hungry.

Original quote translated from Discorsi, Messaggi, Colloqui del Santo Padre Giovanni XXIII, della Poliglotta Vaticana, Vol III: 1960-1961, p. 538.

This item 3086 digitally provided courtesy of CatholicCulture.org

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

New HHS Mandate must truly eliminate complicity 6 hours ago
Self-Esteem: Beyond Pop Psychology 13 hours ago
Government Crackdowns on God and Nature July 22
A legislative mockery: Massachusetts lawmakers rush to replace unconstitutional 'buffer zone' bill July 22
Gay and Transgendered: What Comes Next? July 22

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Vatican issues working document for Synod of Bishops on the family CWN - June 26
New management, new changes coming for reformed Vatican bank CWN - July 8
Sweeping reforms to Vatican's media, financial operations CWN - July 9
‘Even Genghis Khan didn’t do this’: Mosul emptied of Christians CWN - July 21