Today is the Memorial of Saint Clare. St. Clare was born to a noble Italian family at the end of the 12th century. After hearing St. Francis of Assisi preach when she was 15, she decided to imitate him and live a poor humble life for Jesus. She ran away from home and dedicated herself to God.
She went on to form the Order of Poor Ladies which is known today as the Poor Clare’s. The sisters went barefoot, slept on the ground, ate no meat, kept no money and took a vow of silence.
After St. Francis asked St. Clare to accept the office of abbess, she established many other convents throughout Europe.
St. Clare served the sick and washed the feet of the sisters from her convent when they returned from begging. She performed several miracles and many benefited from her examples of wisdom and sanctity.
St. Clare’s humble example fits well with our Gospel today. Jesus tells us, “Whoever becomes humble like this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven.”
St. Clare’s approach to humility was adopting an ascetic lifestyle that turned away from the world and left her completely dependent on God. This approach is not right for everyone but there are many ways to be humble in the life we lead. Humility often starts with gratitude…recognizing the fact that everything we have is a gift from God.
What can we do to better appreciate the blessings we receive each day?
The Gospel also tells us we should “…turn and become like children.” Is there anything in our life we need to turn away from and replace with a childlike trust and dependence on God?
As we reflect on humility this morning, let us ask for the intercession of St. Clare today to help us be more childlike in our faith.