Presenting a Francis of Assisi for the 21st century and introducing the true, bold, and valiant Clare who led his female followers – Francis of Assisi is rightly known for his joyous love of God and nature, but his life was filled with opposition, as revealed in Francis and Clare: The Struggles of the Saints of Assisi, the new biography by Kathleen Brady. Clare of Assisi, to the extent that she is known at all, is honored for her fasting and suffering, but in fact she was also a fighter who outwitted a pope.
Their real story has long been obscured, but today when many feel betrayed by their faiths, this book offers new reasons to admire these historic figures. Francis's greatest shame was allowing the church to betray his promises to Clare. Clare used her association with him to wage a decades-long fight with the papacy, upending some of its plans and blindsiding the pope who thought he had confined her in a cloister. One cannot tell the full story of Francis without the story of Clare. It was not a romance, but it was an extraordinary relationship.
PRAISE FOR THE BOOK
"...as captivating as it is rigorous." – Kirkus Reviews
"Brady succeeds in presenting a more radical, less-anesthetized portrait of Francis and Clare. This impressively researched biography casts its subjects in a new light." - Publishers Weekly
"Everyone knows St. Francis but who is Clare? Kathleen Brady has made a deep dive into the Thirteenth Century to explore the lives of St. Francis of Assisi and St. Clare, a woman from an extremely rich family whose path to sainthood, impeded by others, took longer. This is a fantastic book. Enjoy!"
– Susan Brownmiller, author of Against Our Will: Men, Women, and Rape