It is not fitting, when one is in God’s service, to have a gloomy face or a chilling look.
Fair call by St Francis.
What if my face is gloomy when happy? And it’s scary and disturbing when it’s trying to look happy?
Ha! Good one. But seriously, the lack of smile can be cultural. Eastern Europe, for example. They consider unwarranted smiling to be a sign of mental illness, sometimes.
Maybe one can consider Saint Francis a “Holy Fool” by Russian standards.
Yes, I think you’re right. I have heard Orthodox Christians speak of him as a “Fool for Christ”. I think that sometimes (and I’m not implying that this is the case here) people take his pronouncements at face value, without reflecting on the wider and deeper meaning of what he is saying.
St. Francis personified the ‘Crucified One’, thus he understood and lived-out…to a superlative degree what it means to ‘be redeemed’; in turn he radiated what this means to all of Creation!
All Christians are in “God’s Service” and ambassadors of ‘Our Redeemer and Lord’! St. Francis is known to say: “always preach the Gospel and when necessary use words”!
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