Monday, August 11, 2008

Saint Clare, Patron Saint of Needleworkers

Saint Clare (1193-1253)
Clare di Faverone was born into Nobility to a family of the town of Assisi. She was educated accordingly.
Assisi was known for its fine embroidery and, as part of her education, Clare would have learned how to demonstrate the most intricate patterns and stitches of that time.

Clare met Francis di Bernadone (Saint Francis of Assisi) and became a follower of his teachings. At eighteen, she discarded the privileges of her birthright to live the cloistered life of a nun.

Many years later, Clare became ill, and she spent the next 30 years as an invalid. In spite of her illness, she tried to be of service in whatever way she could. She turned to needlework. Accounts from that time tell that Clare was never idle, even in illness, and had herself propped up in bed so that she could stitch.

It is known that Clare spun flax into thread, and after the linen was woven, she made altar linens for many of the churches around Assisi.

The Feast of St. Clare is celebrated on August 11. (Since 1970, the Feast Day has been set as August 11th, formerly celebrated on August 12th)

Meg Shinall has designed a really lovely chart of Saint Clare and you can see it and order it at the web address below:

There are two lovely articles about Saint Clare here:

Prayer to Saint Clare: Patroness of Cross Stitchers
O Glorious Saint Clare!
G_D has given you the power of working miracles continually,
and the favour of answering the prayers of those who invoke your assistance in misfortune, anxiety, and distress.
We beseech you,
obtain for us from Jesus,
through Mary, His Blessed Mother,
what we beg of you so fervently and hopefully,
(Mention your Petition in Private)
if it be in for the greater Honour and Glory of G_D
and for the good of our souls.

This is the special Novena to Saint Clare of Assisi: The Patron Saint of Stitchers.

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