In addition to his devotion to the passion of Jesus, St. Francis of Assisi was also known for the peace and joy that marked his life—a peace and joy that came from his loving surrender to God. Wherever Francis preached, people were moved by the witness of his life to repent of their sins and embrace Jesus with the same kind of simplicity and humility that he showed. Eventually, Francis' way of living the gospel was captured in a prayer that has come down to us as the "Peace Prayer of St. Francis." This prayer is so well-known because it describes the way we all want to be. We know we don't measure up. We know we fall short in so many ways. And yet we also sense that a life of peace and joy is possible as we learn to rely on the power of the Spirit in our lives.
This Lent, as you prepare for the Sacrament of Reconciliation, try using the different parts of this prayer to help you examine your conscience....
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