The Crusader Francis

St. Francis before the Sultan Al-Kamil of Egypt witnessing the trial by fire (wall fresco, Giotto.)
Francis intended to die a martyr at the hands of his captors.  His crusade was primarily spiritual.  He personified Christ's words “I have come to set the earth on fire, and how I wish it were already blazing!"  I encourage learning more about this saint, unfortunately robbed of much of his message by hijackers (he wasn't a dog lover or a Buddhist).

also via FatherZ
I heard that Fr. Benedict Groeschel, CFR, died last night following recital of the Transitus on the Vigil of the Feast of St Francis. He who was of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal died on the Feast of St. Francis. He was 81.

May he rest in peace.
Fr. Groeschel was at the Dedication Mass for the Guadalupe Shrine in 2008.  I was standing outside afterwords and he was walking by and saw me with my first born, less than a month old.   He was leaving but stopped by for a minute to blessed him.  Father asked if he was baptized yet, I said no not yet, I think it was like the next weekend or something.  It seemed like he wanted to make sure.  Anywho, I'd recommend not judging him by some of the comments he made later in life after his mind began to slip.  Much of my immediate family have worked years in nursing homes. For many, mental health is a constant battle. Clearly, for this Franciscan to die with the Poverello himself, we should take it as a sign of goodness from the Almighty.

1 comment:

  1. We loved Father Benedict at our home, especially my convert husband. When we met him at the EWTN Family weekend held in DeKalb, IL, thanked him, and told him that my husband went to Mass every Sunday and Holy Day for 27 years before he officially became a member of the Church. Afterwords, my husband went out to the car to get the books Father Benedict wrote so that he could get them autographed. After meeting all those people at this event, as he signed the books he said "Oh, you're the guy who took 27 years!" Great story, wonderful memory. He will be missed.


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