In the year 1181, a Giovanni Bernardone was born to an aristocratic family in Assisi, Umbria Italy. His father had been abroad, traveling for his businesses, while his child had been born and he came with the displeasing fact that his son was named after what the Italian thought of as the version for John the Baptist. Not wanting his son to be a Son of God, he began referring to his son as Francesco, otherwise known as Frances. Growing up, Frances grew up as a very privileged child, using his father’s money to his advantage. He and a group of boys would run around town stirring up trouble ‘til late, and Frances was known as the party animal .St. Frances of Assisi referred to that time as, “I lived in sin.” ["St. Francis of Assisi - Saints & Angels." Catholic Online] Francis, whose father urged him to join him in his business, wanted more than wealth: power. Eager to receive it, he quickly joined in the battle against Perugia, Assisi’s long time enemy. Many of the troops were killed, and those who weren’t were taken into captivity to be ransomed. Francis had been kept in captivity for almost a year in a small dungeon with several other men, but once his family had paid the ransom he returned to his old reckless ways. Seizing another opportunity to become a knight, Francis joined the Fourth Crusade boasting that he would return as a great prince.
But less than two days into the journey, he received a vision from God that came to him in his dreams telling him that, “You have mistaken the meaning of your vision. Return to your own town.” [Chesterton, G. K. "Francis the Fighter." St. Francis of Assisi,. New York: George H. Doran, 1924. 39.] Unwilling, he returned back to Assisi, humiliated and ashamed that he had gone away in the first place. In Assisi, he had not returned to his old ways but began to mope around the pastures and streets, believing he had no purpose. One day he had been roaming around an abandoned field when off in the distance he saw a...
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