Franciscan Retreat's Wildlife
All the Creatures, Large and Small,
God made each one, And Blessed them All!
Like our founder, St. Francis, we welcome and enjoy our animal friends. As you can read below, St. Francis was not the only one to have a special connection with God's creatures. All photos taken at Franciscan Retreats and Spirituality Center in Prior Lake
There is the story that when the Queen of Sheba came to test King Solomon, she brought two identical flower bouquets, one real, the other fake. So bent was she on outwitting the king, that she had spared no expense in making the false bouquet exactly the same as the real one. Realizing that there was no way he could possibly tell the two apart, Solomon watched with interest as a bee buzzed into the palace room. The tiny creature flew over to the bouquets, and with little hesitation selected one. Solomon, wisely, selected the same bouquet.
Born about 656, St. Hubert was a member of royalty who dismissed much of his religion for his own interests. One Good Friday he was out hunting, despite his wife's promptings to join her at church. As he was chasing after a large buck, he was shocked when the creature turned, and there, between its antlers was a crucifix, with Our Lord admonishing him, and telling him to change his ways. He did, and is now, the patron saint of hunters.
Here are our Thanksgiving Day visitors. Although, interestingly enough, turkey was not served on the first Thanksgiving. That did not come until much later. Certain popular cookbooks are thought to have helped the trend come into being. Another thing to be thankful for.
It is said, that when the crowds refused to listen to St. Anthony preach, he turned to the sea and spoke God's word to the attentive fish and birds.
This is the day the Lord has made, Let us rejoice and be glad!
This is not a story about a turtle. Unfortunately, we don't have one at the time being. Instead, this is the story of St. Martin de Porres, a Dominican brother from Peru, 1579 - 1639, and the mice. It seems, the Dominican's Sacristy had become overrun with hungry vermin, who seemed to find alter linens and vestments a most satisfying meal. As something needed to be done, the Father Prior announced that they were going to have to exterminate the pests. To this, Br. Martin protested, and requested permission to try and take care of the problem himself. Talking to the mice, he explained the situation, and told them the barn would be the more suitable place for them. Then, like the Pied Piper, he lead the rodents to their new home, where he was sure to feed them every day.
And of course, a story about St. Francis. This one will be about the good saint and the wolf of Gubbio. A rather large, and nasty wolf had been bothering the good people of Gubbio. It was a cunning creature, and all the townspeople were afraid of it. "We need to get rid of this wolf!" was the general consensus. Yet, there was no one to go after the vicious creature. Finally, someone suggested they invite St. Francis to come and see about the wolf. Come and see the holy Friar did, and when he came back to the towns people, it was with the big wolf at his side. After that, the wolf was practically the pet of Gubbio.