Born in Assisi in 1182.  He renounced his wealth after a carefree youth and committed himself to God.  He led a life of evangelical poverty and preached the love of God to all.   He established a rule which a number of his companions followed and which gained the approval of the Holy See.    Out of humility he never became a priest though some of his companions were in Holy Orders.  Besides the Franciscans, he founded a Second Order for cloistered nuns and a Third Order for religious and laity of both sexes.  In 1224  he received the stigmata.   On a missionary joournney to the Holy Land, he became worn out from his apostolic efforts and pained by the stigmata and blinded by eye disease, he died at sunset, October 3, 1226.

FEAST DAY:  October 4
PATRON OF:  Animals, ecology, peace