Saint Francis of Assisi (1181/1182-1226) lived during the late twelfth and early thirteenth centuries and is honored by the Catholic Church as the patron saint of animals and ecology. He was born to a wealthy merchant family whose expectation was that Francis would follow his father in the cloth trade. After receiving a vision in which Christ asked Francis to repair his Church, Francis abandoned all his possessions and began ministering to the poor and the marginalized. Tradition holds that Francis’s love for the natural world led him to preach to man and beast alike that it is the joy and duty of all creatures to praise God and to act as wise stewards of creation.

Books by Francis of Assisi