“Three times Christ on the Cross came to life, and told him: “Go, Francis, and repair my Church in ruins”. This simple occurrence of the word of God heard in the Church of St Damian contains a profound symbolism. At that moment St Francis was called to repair the small church, but the ruinous state of the building was a symbol of the dramatic and disquieting situation of the Church herself. At that time the Church had a superficial faith which did not shape or transform life, a scarcely zealous clergy, and a chilling of love. It was an interior destruction of the Church which also brought a decomposition of unity, with the birth of heretical movements. Yet, there at the center of the Church in ruins was the Crucified Lord, and He spoke: He called for renewal, He called Francis to the manual labour of repairing the small Church of St Damian, the symbol of a much deeper call to renew Christ’s own Church, with her radicality of faith and her loving enthusiasm for Christ.” Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, 1/27/10

Today (Sept. 25th) begins the Novena in preparation for the Solemnity of St. Francis of Assisi.  As we live through this time replete with sin, scandal, and confusion – and especially in light of the events of the last few months – it is quite evident of our dire need of St. Francis’ prayers.  Let us entrust the renewal of the Church to his intercession.

Throughout all of salvation history, when the world was shrouded in darkness, the Lord raised up Saints to bring His Light.  We see the truth of this manifested in the life of the little poor man of Assisi.  And we trust that our faithful God will continue to bring renewal through holiness in our own day…and in our own life.  “At the center of the Church in ruins was the Crucified Lord and He spoke: He called for renewal.”  That same Voice is calling out again.  Let us be the little poor ones who hear His call and respond with love and generosity!

Please join us as we pray for Renewal in the Church through the powerful intercession of St. Francis of Assisi.  All are invited to celebrate his Feast with ardent prayer at Our Lady of Solitude Monastery (please email for directions if this will be your first visit):

  • Transitus of St. Francis – with First Vespers, Reading of the Account of His Passing, and Veneration of His First Class Relic
    Wednesday, Oct. 3rd @ 5 p.m.
  • Holy Mass on the Solemnity of St. Francis
    Thursday, Oct. 4th @ 9 a.m.

To download a copy of the St. Francis Novena, please click here. 
Also, please fill out the form below to have your intentions remembered in our prayers throughout the novena:

St. Francis of Assisi Novena

Kindly let us know how we can pray for you during this Novena to our beloved Holy Father St. Francis

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Where there is peace and meditation, there is neither anxiety nor doubt.
(From The Counsels of St. Francis)