St Clare of Assisi, Patron Saint of TV

Last December, when we visited Assisi, I made sure we passed by the Church of St. Clare.  Several decades ago, when my late dad was bringing pilgrims to sacred sites, my mom and I just stumbled upon her church and there we found her incorrupt body at the altar.

I was never able to visit Assisi again since the great earthquake till a few months ago.  I consider it a blessing that we were able to visit and pray at the sacred shrines in Assisi and vowed to spread her story and teachings.  By the way, it’s not allowed to take photos but I am sure St Clare will forgive me for taking some stolen shots (without flash) so I can share her story to the world.

Marble tablet found near her incorrupt body

St. Clare was the eldest daughter of Favorone and Ortolana Offreduccio. She was born around 1193-1194 and grew up in an aristocratic, well-respected family in Assisi, Italy. Her father was a knight, and her mother was of noble lineage. Her family home was adjacent to the Cathedral of San Rufino.

Incorrupt body of St. Clare found inside a chapel inside the Basilica

When Clare was only a teenager, she heard Francesco Bernardone (St. Francis) preach in the piazza of the cathedral. She was immediately moved by his vision of Gospel life. For his part, Francis had heard about Clare and wanted to meet her. Over a period of more than a year, she and a companion met with Francis to learn more about his manner of living the Gospel. She joined Francis on Palm Sunday night in March, 1212, and with him founded a community of women intent on following in the footprints of the poor, crucified Christ through a life shaped by poverty, contemplation and community. Their mission was to rebuild the church through the witness of their way of living the Gospel in community.

Incorrupt body of St. Clare (close-up)

The BBC calls Saint Clare a ‘cool saint’ because she is the patron saint of television. Clare became this because she once saw mass celebrated on the walls of her dormitory even though she was more than a mile away. She saw this so clearly that she could name the friars who organized the mass the next day!

Many miracles happened during Clare’s lifetime. She cured the sick by blessing them and sometimes the other sisters saw the aura of a rainbow surrounding her. The sisters were frightened when a heavy door fell on her but she escaped entirely unharmed. She could fill olive jars by blessing them.

Basilica of St. Clare in Assisi

When Saint Clare was dying she was visited by the Pope himself. After she died in 1253 a church was built in her honor, Santa Chiara in Assisi.

Powerful Prayer to Saint Clare of Assisi

O glorious Saint Clare! God has given you the power of working miracles continually, and the favor of answering prayers of those who invoke your assistance in misfortune, anxiety and distress; we beseech you, obtain for us from Jesus, through Mary, His Blessed Mother, what we beg of you so fervently and hopefully, if it be for the greater honor of God and for the good of our souls. Amen.
Nibil Obstat:
Rt. Rev. Mons. JOSE C. ABRIOL
Imprimatur:
Bishop HERNANDO ANTIPORDA July 13, 1967

NOVENA TO SAINT CLARE OF ASSISI

Invocation

O most Holy Trinity,
Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
we praise your Holy Name
and the wonders of grace
you worked in your servant, Saint Clare.
Through her powerful intercession
grant us the favours we beg in this novena,
above all the grace to live and die
as she did in your most Holy Love.

Amen.

First Day

O Seraphic Saint Clare,
first disciple of the Poor Man of Assisi,
who hast abandoned all riches and honours
for a life of sacrifice
and of highest poverty,
obtain from God for us the grace we ask
(State your intention here…),
that of always submitting to the Divine Will
and of living confidently
in the providence of our Heavenly Father.

Amen.

Second Day

O Seraphic Saint Clare who,
notwithstanding living separated from the world
hast not forgotten the poor and the afflicted,
but hast become a mother to them,
sacrificing for them your riches
and working for them innumerable miracles;
obtain from God for us the grace we implore
(State your intention here…),
Christian charity towards our brethren
in all their spiritual and temporal needs.

Amen.

Third Day

O Seraphic Saint Clare,
light of your country,
who hast delivered Italy from barbarous invaders;
obtain from God for us the grace we implore
(State your intention here…),
that of overcoming all attacks of the world
against faith and morals
thus preserving in our families
true Christian peace
with a holy fear of God
and a devotion to the Blessed Sacrament.

Amen.

Fourth Day

Blessed Saint Clare,
whose very name means light,
illumine the darkness of our minds and hearts
so that we might see
what God wishes us to do
and perform it
with a willing and joyful heart.
Before your birth,
a Heavenly voice foretold
that you would be a light illuminating the world.
Be a light to us in the sorrows
and anxieties of this earthly life,
and lead us into the eternal light
of our home in Heaven.

Amen.



Fifth Day

O Seraphic Saint Clare,
whose virginal heart was great enough
to love the whole world,
take our petitions into your pure hands
and present them to God.
Pray for us that we may one day
enter joyously before the throne of God.
Let the light of your perfect purity
consume the shadows of sin
and corruption that darkens the world.
Intercede by your innocence for our youth.
Safeguard the peace of our homes
and the unity of our family.
Plead with your chaste love for all in peril.

Amen.



Sixth Day

Generous Saint Clare,
who left wealth and pleasure
and all earthly goods
to become the first spiritual daughter of Saint Francis
and to serve God in the cloister,
help us to commit our lives to God
without limit or measure
so that He may live in us
and shine forth from us
to all whose lives touch ours.
You who loved souls so much
as to make your life a continual sacrifice for them,
obtain for us the graces we now implore
and win for us the strength to praise God
in suffering as well as in joy.

Amen.

Seventh Day

Faithful Saint Clare,
loyal daughter of the Church,
friend and confidante of popes,
intercede for the holy Church
and look graciously from Heaven
on our holy Father Pope.
Enlighten us to remove from our souls
all that hinders the progress of the Church on earth.
Grant that we may share
your great love for the church of God
and spread His kingdom on earth
by a holy life. You,
who worked miracles
in the presence of the pope on earth,
obtain for us the graces we need,
now that you stand
in the presence of the most high God in Heaven.

Amen.

Eighth Day

Valiant Saint Clare,
who fearlessly stood alone
against the barbarous Saracens,
trusting in the Blessed Sacrament
as your only protection,
enkindle in us a tender love for Jesus Christ;
help us to live Eucharistic lives.
You who saved your city of Assisi
from plunder and ruin,
protect our city and archdiocese,
plead for our beloved country
and the suffering world.
A voice from the Sacred Host
rewarded your trust with a promise:
“I will always take care of you.”
Glorious Saint Clare,
from your high place in Heaven,
take care of us now
in our earthly needs
and guide us by your light to Heaven.

Amen.

Ninth Day

Gracious Saint Clare,
who fulfilled your womanhood
by a life of love in prayer and penance,
help us to fulfill our destiny
that we may one day greet you in Heaven.
You who were consoled at your death
by a vision of Christ band His Mother,
obtain for us the grace that we may die
under the special protection of God
and enter into the life
and bliss you now enjoy.
Have pity on us who struggle,
on us who mourn,
and win for us the favours of God
so that after this life
we may come home to Him
who lives and reigns forever and ever.

Amen.

Closing Prayer

V. Pray for us, Saint Clare.
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us Pray:

We Pray You, Lord,
Grant us Your servants
who celebrate the festival of Blessed Clare your Virgin,
by her intercession,
to be partakers of the joys of heaven
and coheirs with Your only-begotten Son,
Who being God,
lives and reigns forever and ever.

Amen.

(Monasterio De Santa Clara, Quezon City, Philippines)

Source:  Poor Clares, Life In Italy

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