St. Francis Research Paper

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Born to a wealthy cloth merchant in the year 1181 in the town of Assisi Italy, Saint Francis grew up in luxury. Expected by many to inherit his father’s business or become a knight, he practiced a lifestyle of extravagance and sinfulness for the first 25 years of his life. Eventually, after a long conversion, he repented and began preaching. In 1209, at the age of 28, he founded the Franciscan order. From then until his death on October 3, 1226 at the age of 44 St. Francis found true joy through living out the virtues. By examining the life of St. Francis, one can see how to attain happiness through his examples of humility, generosity and courage. Humility, though a difficult virtue to live out, is an immense source of joy. During his…show more content…
Francis displayed many acts of courage through his trust in God. The most renowned example of this occurred when he renounced his father and his wealth. He stripped his clothes off and handed them to his father, stating that even the clothes on his back belonged to him. Through this act he was rejecting all the ties to his wealthy family and placing his trust entirely in God. Another time, when Saint Francis was giving money to a leper, he kissed the hand of the leper, trusting that God would protect him from this terrible disease. Spread through contact of bodily fluids such as saliva, leprosy causes severe disfigurations and eventually death. By kissing the leper’s hand, and having his “kiss of peace” returned, he was placing himself at a great risk to catch leprosy himself. Even before his full conversion, while traveling to join the fourth Crusade, he met a shabbily clad knight in poor armor. Moved with compassion, he exchanged clothes and armor with him. During that period of medieval warfare, knights who were seen to be wealthier on the battlefield were spared death and instead captured for ransom. By giving his intricate and expensive armor to the poorer knight, he saved him from a possible death and in the same gesture risked his own life. Rather than fearing what the consequences of his sacrifice would bring, St. Francis repeatedly showed great courage and placed his life in God’s hands; demonstrating how genuine trust in God relieves

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