Housing

For those who have lost their housing:

In the early days of the Franciscan order, the friars did not always have a stable dwelling place. The earliest friars found a hut in the countryside, but they were chased out of the hut by a farmer who wanted to use it to house his donkey.

Shortly after St. Anthony became a friar, he joined some 3,000 to 5,000 friars who had gathered together for Pentecost of 1221 in Assisi. There was no way that a small town like Assisi could host all of these friars in their homes, so the people of Assisi prepared mats out of reeds upon which the friars could sleep wherever they found themselves. To this day, this gathering is called the Chapter of Mats.

While St. Anthony was willing to put up with discomfort, he did not want to impose this upon others. He knew that many people had lost their houses and farms because of the social injustice practiced by tyrants such as Ezzelino of Romagna. St. Anthony confronted him and condemned him for his evil deeds. He also refused to accept a monetary offering that Ezzelino made to the friars because he knew that it was blood money, the fruits of extortion and theft that had left so many without food or housing.

Prayer for oneself:

St. Anthony,
You know what it is like to live without a roof over your head.
You fought for those who were destitute and desperate.
I don't have a proper place to live.
I need your help.
Please intercede for me so that things may work out
and I might find safe and decent housing for myself (and my family).
Amen.

Prayer for others:

St. Anthony,
You know what it is like to live without a roof over your head.
You fought for those who were destitute and desperate.
____________ doesn't have a proper place to live.
He/she needs your help.
Please intercede for _________ so that things may work out
and he/she might find safe and decent housing for himself/herself
(and his/her family).
Amen.

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