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Herb of the Week for 4th October 2006

Herb of the Week for 4th October

By Lynn Kirkland

St Francis, Lover of All Creation (and Zeke)
By Lynn Kirkland

Herb of the Week

St Francis, Lover of All Creation (and Zeke)
By Lynn Kirkland

Churches around the country hold Pet Blessing services on a Sunday as close as possible to the Feast Day of St Francis of Assisi, which is 4th of October.
St Francis died on 4th October 1226.

Although St Francis is best known for his patronage of animals and birds, he is also considered to be the Patron Saint of Ecology and Environment and of Italy, where we find Assisi, the birthplace of St Francis.

St Francis did not immediately feel the call of God in his life; in fact he resisted it quite strongly, living the life of a spoilt rich kid in Assisi where his father was a successful textile merchant.
Eventually the messages from God became too strong to resist and Francis gave up the trappings of wealth to live a simple life in the woods.
It was here that his communications with all aspects of nature began.
It is said that he tamed a man-eating wolf. He told the birds to sing the praises of God everyday.
Just now in the woods we can enjoy the tuis singing their praises for the nectar in the flowering gums and kowhai trees.

Francis was a talented man and he wrote many songs to remind us of the importance of connecting with the world around us.
One was called the Song of the Sun and it was this song that Francis requested be sung by his brothers as he lay blind and dying.
He was welcoming Sister Death as the sun went down at the end of the day.

A verse from this song is:
“Be praised, my Lord, for Sister Earth!
She is the mother who governs us and gives us food.
For us she makes all kinds of fruits,
All kinds of colours of flowers
And sweet herbs.”

Lovely words for us to ponder on as spring approaches. St Francis of Assisi, patron Saint of nature, tamer of wolves and lover of animals, we salute you.

Appreciate your precious pets always as those “children in fur coats” bring such joy into our lives.

The Herb Farm
Grove Road, RD10
New Zealand


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