Francis of Assisi - " Brother Son Sister Moon"
Crisis and conversion:
While Francis is sick and dreaming, he has images of nature which represent the
happiness and peacefulness. He also has images of war which help him understand
that it isn't the greatest thing... neither is it the most honorable.
Francis has many great conflicts with his father. Francis' father is very
materialistic and possessive. Francis' father did not honorably earn the money,
he bought the "loot" from the crusades for a small price and sold them to their
rightful owners for a much higher price. Father expects a lot of Francis. He
expects Francis to be just like him... a so called businessman, who is profitable,
but not in an honorable way. Francis' father sends him to war so Francis can get
bring his father back a triptych. Francis and his father have different views of
life. Francis believes in freedom, believes that a person does not have to be
rich to be prosperous, and he would rather be poor like Jesus then be rich,
which Jesus was not. He thinks that the rich are misrepresenting Jesus because
the rich are placing the poor behind themselves. Francis thinks that Jesus
represents the poor as well as the rich... "all men are created equal".
Francis can't help but to feel scared of lepers in the beginning. After all,
being scared is a normal human trait. Being in a big, bulky, helmet must feel
awkward. It feels like your being closed in. Francis also feels comfort. He sees
birds as a sign of freedom. This idea helps him become independent. Francis
going on the roof represents the feeling of freedom compared to his bed where he
was miserably enclosed.
The way mass was held was inappropriate because equality was not assessed. The
poor were dressed in rags and they were seated as far back as possible. On the
other hand, the rich were elegantly dressed and were seated right up front.
Christ's face was constructed in a rich expensive way. Christ's eyes "opened"
and Francis understood that the mass should be celebrated equally, not held
discretely. Francis screamed "no" to the idea itself that the mass should be
held like the way it was held. He also is saying no to the misunderstood fact
that Jesus favors the rich over the poor.
Francis' father cares very much for his possessions. When Francis goes down in
the "dungeon" where slaves are making money, he feels sorry for them and
realizes that his father is not a honorable man... he has slaves work in grave
conditions and probably doesn't pay them enough or doesn't pay them at all. He
realizes the importance of human life... over money. Francis' father becomes
violent because he didn't raise his son in a way of not caring for money. He
wanted Francis to take over the family business.
The bishop is a corrupt man. His duties include a judge and the interpreter of
the mass. Francis believes that possessions are only material; but, a soul is
something that cannot be taken away. The bishop lies in order to continue eating...
he says that he was praying; but, in fact he was eating. Francis' father lies by
saying that he worked hard to get all the money for his son. This is obviously
not true because his father wants the money for himself, and it's not like the
father worked hard to get the money. Francis, in no way, wants his father's
money or his birthright.
Spiritual and Ecclesial Development:
Francis goes to San Damiano. He becomes the "community builder", he helps out to
build the place. Francis' work song implies that it is not a job or task that he
has to do... it's a pleasure for him. Francis has many thoughts which come back to
one main one... the idea that a man should be free and that they should all be
Francis' dreams become a reality. His friends don't understand in the beginning
why Francis would want to become poor; but, they understand after awhile that
wealth isn't everything and they also help him out. Bernardo feels guilty for
killing so many people in war that it doesn't take him long to realize Francis'
idea. Francis' wants to get the message that the Emperor should "throw his
scepter in the mud" to show that u don't need all those riches to be "rich" in
Everybody hates what Francis is doing, especially the nobility, because he in
actuality is right.
The mass at San Damiano is the way the mass should be celebrated. There is no
assigned seating place, the music is sung by anyone or anything( as the ducks
are shown to be singing). Bread and animals are given at the alter to show the
quality of sharing. The cross at Assisi is made with expensive items and is
fully and overly expensively dressed. The cross at San Damiano; however, is
simple and is not made with expensive materials. It truthfully represents the
image of Jesus... a beggar. The mass back in Assisi became less crowded. The poor
went to the mass at San Damiano and left the mass at Assisi high and dry.
Paulos says that Francis is too simple because he could have so much more but
yet picks too live like a beggar. He also believes that Francis will fall
because the pope back in Assisi can do whatever he wants to Francis and San
Damiano. He helps Francis out by getting the pope to talk to him. He places the
view of the church members in order from least to greatest. The clerics of the
church become enraged at Francis because he criticizes the pope. The pope claims
that power and riches go along with the job. I don't agree with this statement.
When the pope understands what Francis is talking about, then he calls Francis
back in and kneels to his feet and kisses them to show that he is not higher in
rank than Francis. The cardinals are just stunned and don't understand why the
pope is kneeling and kissing the feet of a beggar.
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