Text from The Saint Andrew Daily Missal,
unless stated otherwise.
Feast Day 12 August.
English: Saint Clare and Sisters of her Order, San Damiano, Assisi, Italy.
Dansk: Den hellige Clara med ordenssøstre, San Damiano, Assisi, Italy.
Photo: June 2007.
Source: Own work.
Author: Gunnar Bach Pedersen
As God had raised at the side of Saint Benedict his sister, Saint Scholastica, so He placed by Saint Francis of Assisi, Saint Clare, whom he made Superioress of The Second Order Founded by him.
[Saint Francis Founded three Orders:
The Franciscans, or First Order;
The Poor Clares, or Second Order;
and, lastly, for The Laity, his Third Order.
The Second Order numbered, in 1935, 13,600 Members.
It gave to The Church five Saints and seventeen Beatified.]
Saint Clare of Assist.
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Saint Clare was born at Assisi, at the end of the 12th-Century. On a visit to The Patriarch Saint Francis, she expressed to him her desire of becoming The Spouse of Christ (Epistle). As he had not yet instituted Nuns of his Order, he sent the young Virgin to The Benedictine Nuns of Saint Paul, and, later on, to The Benedictine Monastery of Saint Angelo de Panso, in the neighbourhood of Assisi.
Her sister, Agnes, having joined her, Saint Francis placed them in a small house adjacent to the Church of Saint Damian. Very soon, their mother and many other persons joined them. Their Rule entailed austerities unknown until then in Monasteries for women.
They walked bare-footed, slept on the ground, observed perpetual abstinence, and made poverty the basis of their lives, so that, by detachment, they might give themselves more to God.
The extraordinary devotion of Saint Clare to The Blessed Sacrament, was rewarded by a Miracle. On the day when the Saracens, who were besieging Assist, tried to enter the Convent of Saint Damian, she held up The Ciborium and put them to flight.
On 11 August 1253, she was visited by a Choir of Virgins, in White Robes, among whom was one who surpassed in beauty all the others (Offertory), and she went to meet her Spouse (Communion).
Two years later, she was Canonised by Pope Alexander IV.