It was wonderful to see St. Clare on the front page of The Telegram just before her feast day. Bringing attention to her silent corner presence at St. Clare’s Mercy Hospital gives reason to tell her story.
St. Clare was born in Italy, in 1194, to a wealthy family. As a little girl she was known to be gentle, prayerful and kind. As a young woman, the words of St. Francis kindled a flame in her heart; she was inspired to live a poor and humble life. She left her rich home and founded the first community of the Order of Poor Clares. St. Clare and her sisters wore no shoes, ate no meat, lived in a poor house, and kept silent most of the time. Their generous spirit was found in caring and praying for the sick. Comfort and love was brought to suffering souls and their loved ones.
St. Clare was sick and suffered great pains for many years, but she was brave and cheerful to the end, dying in 1253. She demonstrated an eloquent determination in her work; a charitable encouragement to the poor; and a loving mercy for the sick.
The silent influence of a peaceful statue of St. Clare in a hospital corner appears to be bringing fear to some who feel threatened by her faithful service to Christ.
There is a battle going on — it’s one of spiritual warfare. After the Catholic symbolism has been removed, then the name of the hospital will be in question, as is some of the saint-honoured schools. We’re living in a city named after St. John the Baptist.
Will demands be made to change the name because it’s not all-inclusive?
Remove the light of the world, and there will be darkness.
Elizabeth A.S. Coleman