September 26 marks the birthday of Giovanni de Bernardino, better known by the name he adopted later in life – St Francis of Assisi.
The Italian friar was born to a wealthy merchant and lived the high life for much of his youth, going off to battle against Perugia before his life radically turned around. After a year in captivity followed by a serious illness, he abandoned the sports and extravagant feasts that had dominated his life and took a vow of poverty.
His radical approach continues to have widespread influence today through the Franciscan monks. The current Pope, born Jorge Mario Bergoglio, chose to adopt Francis' name for his papal title.
Here are 10 quotes commonly attributed to St Francis that will challenge your approach to faith and life:
1. "Start by doing what is necessary, then what is possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible."
2. "While you are proclaiming peace with your lips, be careful to have it even more fully in your heart."
3. "It is no use walking anywhere to preach unless our walking is our preaching."
4. "If God can work through me, he can work through anyone."
5. "Lord, grant that I might not so much seek to be loved as to love."
6. "All the darkness in the world cannot extinguish the light of a single candle."
7. "For it is in giving that we receive."
8. "A single sunbeam is enough to drive away many shadows."
9. "It is in pardoning that we are pardoned."
10. "Where there is hatred, let me sow love. Where there is injury, pardon. Where there is doubt, faith."