A Sonnet for St. Francis

st-francis-of-assisiIn honour of the great saint, whose feast day falls on October 4th, and as a reflection on the new Pope who has chosen that saint’s name, and so affirmed their common task, in Christ, to rebuild his Church, I thought I would post this sonnet which reflects the way Francis responded to Christ’s call by casting away the rich trappings he had inherited and embracing holy poverty.The sonnet, composed since his election, is also a prayer that Pope Francis the 1st will enable the wider church to do the same! As always you can hear the sonnet by clicking on the ‘play’ button or the title

My sonnets for the Christian Year are available from Canterbury Press Here and on Kindle here

This sonnet for Francis is taken from my new book The Singing Bowl, published at the end last year by Canterbury Press. It is also available from Amazon UK Here, and USA Here


‘Francis, Rebuild My Church’; a sonnet for the Saint and for the new Pope

‘Francis rebuild my church which, as you see
Is falling into ruin.’ From the cross
Your saviour spoke to you and speaks to us
Again through you. Undoing set you free,
Loosened the traps of trappings, cast away
The trammelling of all that costly cloth
We wind our saviour in. At break of day
He set aside his grave-clothes. Your new birth
Came like a daybreak too, naked and true
To poverty and to the gospel call,
You woke to Christ and Christ awoke in you
And set to work through all your love and skill
To make our ruin good, to bless and heal
To wake the Christ in us and make us whole.
Pope Francis

7 Comments

Filed under christianity, Current affairs, Poems

7 responses to “A Sonnet for St. Francis

  1. Thanks for this too. Great reminder of the first Francis and Francis the first. God bless you!

  2. Julie

    Reblogged this on Anglican, Plain: My Life and the History of the World and commented:
    Franciscan dedication, a sonnet from Malcolm Guite.

  3. Yesterday was a significant day for me, and I didn’t even realize it the feast day of St. Francis. I love this sonnet! I was on a retreat at Mission San Luis Rey, and we spent time contemplating your poem “Singing Bowl.” So profound: “Begin the song exactly where you are . . . ” Thank you for allowing God to speak through you in all your writings.

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