Our Lady's Little Scribe seeks to use the internet for sharing the Catholic faith and Franciscan spirituality, going from Gospel to life and life to the Gospel.

The silk painting, shown above, is by Ty Mam Duw, Poor Clare Colettines, Hawarden, WALES GB. Their website is here. Ty Mam Duw is Welsh and means The House of the Mother of God. Our Lady of the Pearl cherishes their friendship and is grateful for their many kindnesses and prayers. The image is used with permission.

Entertaining Angels

Entertaining Angels
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Sunday, March 16, 2008

Have You Grown Weary?

I received an e-mail from a friend today, written to several Franciscans. She shared some of her struggles which are so similar to mine lately that I could have written it myself. She writes: “As we near the end of Lent, I pray that you have all had a fruitful journey. For me it has been a rough, dry walk. I have grown weary. Friends have told me that it is because I stretch myself too thin. I’m sure that’s true because I’ve always been a ‘Martha’ and find it hard to just ‘sit and know.’”

Does this sound familiar to you? It does to me. Yesterday (Saturday), after work, I started driving to Mass and was so overwhelmed with fatigue and pain that I turned around, went home and went to bed. These problems are ongoing.

For God's people, there is comfort in reading the lives of the saints who struggled with illness, various trials and had periods of dryness. For example, in reading about St. Francis, we are reminded about the period during his youth, when he went to fight with Assisi against Perugia and how Assisi lost the Battle of Collestrada in 1202. Francis was wounded and taken prisoner. He was 20 years old and spent a year in prison in Perugia. He was not well when he returned home. He spent weeks in bed and was ill for a long time.

Thomas of Celano, in The Life of Saint Francis, wrote:

  • "When he had recovered a little and, with the support of a cane, had begun to walk about here and there through the house in order to regain his health, he went outside one day and began to gaze upon the surrounding countryside with greater interest. But the beauty of the fields, the delight of the vineyards, and whatever else was beautiful to see could offer him no delight at all. He wondered at the sudden change in himself, and considered those who loved these things quite foolish."

How unlike the St. Francis we know - the lover of all creation! And then, there were other illnesses and sorrows to come. Probably he was sick all of his life from his 20's on, and as the numbers of Little Brothers grew, so did his sorrows as they drifted from his dreams for the Order.

At the end of his life, he wrote his great Canticle of the Sun and added his final verses as he embraced Sister Death and gave praise to God: "Praise and bless my Lord, and give Him thanks and serve Him with great humility."

Just as the Lord had plans for St. Francis, he has plans for us as well. Do not despair for the Lord is with us, and the Blessed Mother prays for us.

O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good,
for his steadfast love endures for ever.
Psalms 118:1


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MikeF said...

A prayer from our Third Order Office could be just for you -

May our blessed Lady pray for [you].
May Saint Francis pray for [you].
May Saint Clare pray for [you].
May all the saints of the Third Order pray for [you].
May the Holy Angels watch over us and befriend [you].
May our Lord Jesus give [you] His blessing and His peace.


Have a blessed (and refreshed!) Easter


Mary Jane said...

Have You Grown Weary? certainly hit the nail on the head for me. Reading this was a blessing. Speaking of blessings, Our Lady's Little Scribe is a blessing to many. Thank you.
Blessed Easter wishes to all.

Little Scribe said...

Thank you both for writing. I appreciate your comments and encouragement. I've also received private e-mails, and the writers are using the same expression of "hitting the nail on the head." We are a tired bunch. Blessings to everyone.