St. Clare article from De Vita Contemplativa


#1

Ave Maria!

Happy Solemnity of Our Holy Mother St. Clare!

Here is an article from De Vita Contemplativa, a "Monthly Magazine for Monasteries" by the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate. It's entitled, “St. Clare and Contemplation”:

“The cloistered life, therefore, has not only not restricted the Sait's heart, but on the contrary, has dilated it to the point of its assuming cosmic dimension in order to be able to praise God for all and in all things.”

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“What a great laudable exchange: to leave the things of time for those of eternity, to choose the things of heaven for the goods of earth, to receive the hundred-fold in place of one, and to possess a blessed and eternal life.”* -St. Clare of Assisi

Holy Mother St. Clare, pray for us. Ave Maria!

In the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary,

fra John Paul


#2

A great post! Thank you for sharing.


#3

Ave Maria!

"St. Clare of Assisi"
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"The Eucharistic Miracle of St. Clare of Assisi"
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Ave Maria!

fra John Paul


#4

Ave Maria!

"Sancta Clara Dei Matris Vestigium":

“In the Canonisation Process the sisters gave testimony to the fact that there were no words to express the sanctity of Lady Clare, affirming without any doubt that all that could be said of holiness regarding a woman, after the Virgin Mary, could be in truth be said of St. Clare.”

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"The Greatness of Virginity":
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Cover/back TOC
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St. Clare of Assisi from The Franciscan Book Of Saints:

"But her virtues surpassed the gifts with which nature endorsed her. She interested herself in the poor and frequently denied herself things so as to be able to give more to the poor members of Christ. She loved prayer, and it was her sweetest delight to surrender her heart to sentiments of ardent devotion before Jesus Christ in the Blessed Sacrament. Beneath her beautiful garments she wore a sharp penitential belt in order to honor the sufferings of Christ and to preserve herself a chaste virgin for His sake.
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When Clare had successfully overcome the great opposition of her family, who had intended to force her to return home, her sister Agnes joined her in the sacrifice. St. Francis arranged a little convent for them near the church of St. Damian. There the number of consecrated virgins soon increased. They served God in great poverty, strict penance, and complete seclusion from the world according to a rule which St. Francis gave them as his Second Order. Clare was obliged in obedience to accept the office of abbess in 1215 and to continue in it for 38 years until her death. But her love for humility found compensation in the performance of the lowliest services toward her sisters. In spite of her great physical sufferings, she set her sisters a striking example of zeal in penance and prayer.
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After suffering from serious illness for 30 years, Clare felt that her end was drawing nigh. After she had received the last sacraments, she and one of her sisters beheld the Queen of Virgins coming with a large escort to meet her, the spouse of Jesus Christ. On August 11, 1253, she entered into the joys of eternity and on the following day her body was buried. Pope Alexander IV canonized her already in the year 1255. She was chosen as the universal patroness of television in 1958.

THE GREATEST GLORY
1. "Oh, how beautiful is the chaste generation with glory!" (Wisdom 4:1). This praise of heaven St. Clare and her company of sisters have merited for themselves. Corporal beauty, personal charm, and costly clothes in which the children of the world take so much pleasure, this wise virgin considered as naught. She understood the meaning of the Psalmist's words: "All the glory of the king's daughter is within" (Psalm 44:14). Untainted purity of soul. humility, voluntary poverty, penance, ardent love of God; these were the virtues in which she sought her glory, and in them she found imperishable beauty. Where are now the beautifully dressed women of Assisi of that period? Their memory has vanished. But Clare, like St. Francis, shines in heaven and on earth. Both have made their town famous throughout the world. -- Do you want true and lasting glory? It is to be found only in virtue. Where have you sought it in the past?
2. Consider that, like a wise virgin, St. Clare did not make a display of her virtues before the world, but strove to hide them in the strictest seclusion. If the violet, which give forth such a sweet scent in its seclusion, is planted in an open garden, its beauteous color fades and the sweetness of its scent diminishes. The same thing happens with our virtues and good works. That is why St. Gregory, commenting on the Gospel parable of the ten virgins, says: "The good that we do must be carefully concealed, so that we do not look for favor and honor among men, otherwise that which externally appears as virtue would be inwardly deprived of its merit." Christians who are interested in their salvation, and especially Christian women and girls, even though they do not live in a convent, are included in the words of the Apostle: "For you are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God" (Col 3:3). -- Can this be said of you?
3. Consider what happiness St. Clare found even here on earth in her life of seclusion. This did not consist in material comfort, nor even in continual spiritual consolation, but in sacrifices made for God, by which she became ever more intimately united with the Source of all happiness. She once said to a young girl: "Our alliance is arrived at by self-denial and the renunciation of earthly things, by the crucifixion of the body and the sacrifice of the will, but the joys attached to it are eternal, the bond is indissoluble, it begins in the world, death puts the final seal to it." On the morning of the day on which she died she received the holy Viaticum; in the afternoon, Pope Innocent IV paid her a visit and have her the general absolution. But Clare felt happier at having received the Lord of heaven in holy Communion than at having been honored by a visit from the pope. -- May we, too, become indifferent to all earthly glory so that we may be permitted to enjoy the eternal!"
franciscan-sfo.org/sts/S0811clar.htm

Holy Mother St. Clare, pray for us! Ave Maria!

fra John Paul


#5

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