St Louis IX, King of France and Patron of the Secular Franciscan
Today is the feast of St. Louis, a king who cared for the poor. Once a week Louis would invite 13 poor people to dine with him at his table. Louis (1214-1270) was king of France from 1226 until
his death. In his day, he was viewed as the quintessential
Christian ruler. He fostered a uniform system of justice and
attempted to quell private wars in his realm and was
attentive to the rights of the poor
...Very devout in his personal life, he was never heard to
speak ill of anyone. He was a great patron of the Franciscan
and Dominican friars and their evangelizing efforts. His life
reminds us that Franciscan spirituality always involves a
commitment to establishing God's justice in society and the
promotion of peace. Although his life certainly expressed
the values of true Christian penance - seeking to turn from
evil and live out Gospel values - there is actually no
historical record of his formally entering the Order of
Penance (the "Third Order" of Franciscans). In the United
States not only the city of St. Louis, but the California
mission of San Luis Rey
(the new site of the Franciscan School of Theology)
are named after him. The painting was done by El Greco
several centuries after Louis's death).
Monday, August 25, 2014
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