Assisi – Where We Begin (May 12 – 16, 2009)

For Saints Francis and Clare, this little town clinging to the flanks of a rugged ridge overlooking the Umbrian plains was where it all began. Casting off their old ways of thinking and of doing, they started a revolution in how the Church understands the Gospel. A seminar was held here for 250 religious, focusing on ‘Creation’ – and Creation as the very business of our lives, “the heart of mission”.

Like Francis and Clare, we were called on to strip down and start again – because creation is forever renewing us, and the God inspiring creation is one of endless energy. Dennis Edwards, an Australian theologian, called on us to re-think Jesus here: how deeply Jesus loved creation, how totally God loved us to ‘become flesh’. We spent a lot of time in the mystery of how creation is transformed in Jesus.

As Francis and Clare experienced here a transformation of how people related to God, enabling new lifestyles to appear in the medieval world, Assisi was subtly leading us to re-consider our common future. What does Lady Poverty have up her sleeves for us? It may be a transformed Earth will see us living sustainably, because that is the only way we will all have a future.

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