Summer Saints – Clare

Saint Clare was born in 1194, in Assisi, Italy.  Her family was very rich, but from the time Clare was a little girl, she was more interested in prayer and fasting than in playing and shopping.  When she was eighteen, a priest named Francis came to preach at her church.  You might know him better as Saint Francis of Assisi.  Clare was inspired by what he said, and she wanted to join him in the religious life.  On Palm Sunday, she snuck out of her house at night, and met Francis and his followers in secret.  There, Francis cut off her beautiful hair and gave her a rough habit to wear instead of her beautiful clothing.  Her parents tried to make her come home, but Clare refused.  She was determined to be a nun.

Francis put Clare in charge of a group of women who came to be called the Poor Clares.  They did not wear shoes, eat meat, or talk much.  Clare lived the rest of her life without leaving her convent, but this doesn’t mean she had a boring life.  Once, an army came to attack the city, and they planned to attack Clare’s convent first.  Clare took the Blessed Sacrament in a monstrance and carried it to the wall of the convent.  She held it up where the soldiers could see it, and they stopped and ran away, frightened.  Another time, Clare was too sick to go to Mass, but she could see the Mass “playing” on the wall of her room.  This is why she is the patron saint of television.  Clare died in 1253.

Even though Clare is the patron of television, try keeping yours off for the entire day.  Instead, use the time to do something fun together as a family, like take a bike ride, bake cookies, go to adoration, or visit some friends.

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