Francis, the son of a wealthy cloth merchant was born
in Assizi in 1181. His mother had him baptized John, but
his father, who was off in France, selling fine brocades,
had so fell enamored by French chivalry that when
he returned he had the boy renamed Francis.
Francis, at nineteen, was fighting in a boarder war with
Perugia, when he was captured and imprisoned for a year.
He filled that year with prayer and serious thoughts, and .he
emerged completely absorbed in a desire to relieve the misery of
the poor .
A love for the poor caused Francis to sell some of his
father's fabrics to feed the destitute.When his father
brought him to court, Francis stripped himself of
everything he had from his father, and the Lord used that
example to bring tens of thousands of young people to
give their lives as Franciscans.