The vocation of St. Clare of Assisi

Vocations “come and follow me”

The vocation of St. Clare of Assisi

The Legend of St. Clare, Virgin (LCl 7-8: CAED 285-286)

The Solemnity of the Day of the Palms was at hand when the young girl Clare went with a fervent heart to the man of God, asking him about her conversion and how it should be carried out. The father Francis told her that on the day of the feast, she should go, dressed and adorned, together with the crowd of people, to receive a palm, and, on the following night, leaving the camp she should turn her worldly joy into mourning the Lord’s passion.
Therefore, when Sunday came, the young girl, thoroughly radiant with festive splendor among the crowd of women, entered the Church with the others. Then something occurred that was a fitting omen: as the others were going to receive the palms, while Clare remained immobile in her place out of shyness, the Bishop, coming down the steps, came to her and placed a palm in her hands. On that night, preparing to obey the command of the saint, she embarked upon her long desired flight with a virtuous companion. Since she was not content to leave by way of the usual door, marveling at her strength, she broke open with her own hands that other door that is customarily blocked by wood and stone.
And so she ran to Saint Mary of the Portiuncula, leaving behind her home, city, and relatives. There the brothers, who were observing sacred vigils before the little altar of God, received the virgin Clare with torches. There, immediately after rejecting the filth of Babylon, she gave the world a bill of divorce. There, her hair shorn by the hands of the brothers, she put aside every kind of her fine dress.
Was it not fitting that an Order of flowering virginity be awakened in the evening or in any other place than in this place of her, the first and most worthy of all, who alone is Mother and Virgin! This is the place in which a new army of the poor, under the leadership of Francis, took its joyful beginnings, so that it might be clearly seen that it was the Mother of mercies who brought to birth both Orders in her dwelling place.

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