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A proposal of the Sacro Convento of Assisi for Lent 2021:

On the lower part of some medieval crucifixes, painted on panel, St. Francis is shown with his head resting at the feet of Jesus, in an attitude of tender affection for him and of empathetic participation in the pain caused by the bleeding wounds of the nails of crucifixion. These crucifixes well represent the feelings of compassion that Francis felt for the Lord Jesus. St. Francis carried in his heart and body the very life of Christ of which, as his biographer points out, above all were imprinted: "the humility of his Incarnation and the charity of his Passion".

During this Lent of 2021 we the friars of the Sacro Convento offer to all the opportunity to experience the compassion of Saint Francis for the Passion of Jesus, in a sort of prolonged Way of the Cross, by way of a 'reading' of frescoes found in the Basilica and by listening to reflections and musical works.

Here's how our proposal will unfold:

* 'The frescoes of the transept south of the Lower Basilica', by Pietro Lorenzetti, present the last moments of Jesus' life, from his entrance into Jerusalem until his death on the cross and burial; furthermore one can see his descent to the underworld and his resurrection from the dead. A testimony of the highest pictorial art, these frescoes offer the opportunity to live an intense spiritual experience, as is characteristic in presentations of the Biblia pauperum (Bible of the poor). A short video will be presented each week; these are "homemade" videos by some friars of the Sacro Convento and offer an artistic commentary on one of the frescoes, together with a Franciscan spiritual reading. The first presentation, a preview of sorts, consists of a commentary on the fresco of Jesus' entry into Jerusalem. The explanation will be by Fra Felice Autieri, while the filming and editing will be done by Fra Francesco Saverio Hoai Tran Van. This first video will be available on-line Friday, February 19th at 12.00 pm, on our social media pages: https://www.facebook.com/sanfrancescoassisi, https://www.instagram.com/sanfrancescoassisi,
* The Musical Chapel of the Basilica is offering a series of events entitled, "Franciscan Lent – Unusual Meetings in the Library of the Sacro Convento of Assisi". These are five meetings with reflections by Fra Giuseppe Magrino and with the "The Franciscan Singers", in preparation for Easter by way of the music of the Masters of the Chapel of the Order of Friars Minor Conventuals,and kept in the Library of the Sacro Convento. The meetings will be broadcast on the Fridays of Lent, starting from February 26th at 12.00 pm: on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/cappellaMusicaleAssisi (and shared on other social pages and on sites related to the Basilica).

* Every day "Young people to Assisi", the service of youth ministry of the friars of the Sacro Convento, offers "Towards Easter with Saint Francis", a meditation itinerary for Lent that can be followed on facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/GVAssisi/. From Monday to Friday throughout the season of Lent, the cycle offers short audios about the events of the Passion, Death and Resurrection of Jesus as portrayed in the frescoes in the Basilica by Pietro Lorenzetti. The first introductory audio was released on Ash Wednesday, February 17th.

* Furthermore, throughout the Season of Lent evening meditations on the Gospel of the day by Fra Enzo Fortunato can be found on the facebook page for the Basilica magazine San Francesco: https://www.facebook.com/rivistasanfrancesco.