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St. Francis Conversion Events
and Your Personal Story

Giovanni (John) di Pietro di Bernardone was born and baptized in Assisi, Italy, in the year of 1182. He was later renamed Francesco (Francis) by his father, Pietro. Following the battle between Assisi and Perugia, Francis was captured and imprisoned, where he stayed for nearly a year. It was his father who ransomed Francis from prison, but then upon his return home, he endured a long illness. This illness tempered Francis' desire for glory and knighthood but his father continued to push Francis toward becoming a knight. So again in 1204, he enlisted to participate in the Fourth Crusade. On route to Spoleto, Francis in a vision was directed to return back to Assisi to seek God's will. This was the beginning of the gradual process of conversion for Francis that took place over several years.

There are many powerful conversion stories of Francis; however, listed below are three such stories. The last page, "Significance of the San Damiano Cross," gives you a little bit of history of the cross and why it is an important icon to the Franciscan family. Following each story, are reflection questions to spend time in prayer.

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St. Francis Conversion Events and Your Personal Story

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