Francis of Assisi (1182-1226) has inspired many, including the Fifth Rector of All Saints’, the Rev. Frank Alvarez, who named one of his sons “Francis”. The stained glass window in the sacristy is given in honor and in memory of that son, Francis Alvarez. We at All Saints’ are inspired to honor the Patron Saint of Animals on the Sunday closest to his feast day, October 4, with an annual service of the Blessing of the Animals. A stone statue depicting Francis and his love for animals stands in the Close of the parish church.
One of St. Francis’ biographers writes that Francis, the son of a prosperous merchant of Assis, “spent his youth in harmless revelry and fruitless attempts to win military glory”.
After several encounters with beggars and lepers, Francis decided to devote his life to Lady Poverty.
In 1210, Pope Innocent the Third confirmed the simple Rule for the Order of Friars, a name Francis chose to emphasize his desire to be numbered among the “least” of God servants.
The order grew throughout Europe, and now exists in America. The Episcopal Church has Franciscans throughout the country, along with Orthodox and Roman Catholic Christians.
The Francis Window was dedicated in September, 2016, when the Rev. Mary Rosenthal, sister of Francis and daughter of Fr. Alvarez, preached, thus creating another link to Francis with the All Saints’ parish church.