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Death: 14th century


Francis was a Franciscan brother in the order’s friary of Oria, Italy. A native of Durazzo (Durres), Albania, he had first entered the Franciscans as a teenager and had taken for his religious name that of the order’s founder. After coming to Italy, Brother Francis spent the rest of his life in Oria, exhibiting a profound spirit of obedience, a childlike simplicity, an eagerness to serve others, and a rigorous fidelity to monastic silence. On one occasion, while Francis was working as a cook in the friary’s kitchen, he heard in the distance a bell in the friary chapel heralding the moment of consecration at a Mass being celebrated there. Francis would have wanted to be in the chapel to adore the consecrated Eucharist, but his kitchen duties required him to stay where he was. Nonetheless, he dropped to his knees, directing his tearful gaze toward the chapel as he beat his breast and raised his mind to God. Instantly, the wall between him and the chapel altar miraculously opened, unveiling to his eyes the priest’s elevation of the Sacrament.


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Image of Bonaventure was a friend and a disciple of Francis. When he looked at Francis he saw Jesus Christ. Bonaventure, like his friend Francis, was also a mystic. To him the Spirit of Francis is the Spirit of Jesus and

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