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St. Francis’ Concept of Poverty as Part of a Spiritual Journey

Based in Kansas City, Missouri, Bradley DiTeresi has an extensive background in real estate development that extends to time spent in Peru. Committed to his Catholic faith, Bradley DiTeresi takes inspiration from the doctors of the church through the centuries, from Pope Francis to St. Francis of Assisi.

Assisi was a 13th century saint known for a firm but gentle demeanor and faith in the nobility of all beings, which extended to the animals around him. St. Francis remained tied to orthodox medieval Catholicism and urged others to attend confession, honor priests, and receive the Eucharist. He also fully embraced a life of poverty.

This lifestyle choice was distinct from the monastic way of life, which involves a simple life of communal sharing but does not abstain fully from the material world. St. Francis instead chose to follow Jesus’ extortion to “give everything away.” His concept of poverty was not one of economic deprivation, but of Christological choice, modeled on the “self-emptying” of Jesus (Philippians 2). Furthermore, St. Francis encouraged his acolytes to follow in his footsteps, inspired by the humility of Christ, by establishing the Franciscans, or the Order of Friars Minor.

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