Protagonist: Francis, Wolf
Francis loved the woods and out-of-doors because everything was there—good and evil, danger and refuge, violence and peace.
When he heard the news about the wolf of Gubbio, Francis felt sympathetic towards the wolf. He saw in the wolf not so much the stalker as the stalked. Everyone feared wolves and disliked them. But he saw in the eyes of wolves a fear and anger. But, wolves, after all are just like men. Their hunger, the restless pursuit, the baring of fangs was so symbolic of what was wild and violent in all of us.
Before the gossip could create more fear, Francis bravely walked to the plaza and began to preach about God’s commandment concerning love for all creatures of God. He asked the people where the wolf’s lair was because he wanted to see it and prove to the wolf and all that love had nothing to do with fear. The townsfolk were shocked, while some began to laugh in mockery of Francis a woman then showed Francis the way to the wolf’s lair.
Soon, they reached the place. Suddenly, they heard behind them a low growl and a pounding of the ground. Francis then made the sign of the cross. He took a deep breath and started walking slowly towards the wolf. The wolf was growling menacingly. Then, Francis stopped a few yards from the wolf and stared at him as kindly as he could under the situation.
The wolf’s eyes flashed with anger but Francis did not move now that he was face-to-face with the wolf. He stood still and tried to look calm. Then, he said in a low quiet voice: “Brother Wolf.” The wolf quieted down in an apparent response to Francis’ words. Francis spoke again “Brother Wolf, in the name of Jesus, our Brother, I have come for you. We need you in the city. The people have come with me to ask you to be the guardian and protector of Gubbio. In return, we offer you respect and shelter for as long as you live.” Francis then stretched out his hand to the wolf that...