Pacificus

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For the 17th-century saint, see Pacificus of San Severino.
St Francis receiving the stigmata, from a painting by Vincenzo Foppa, from Wikimedia Commons

St. Francis of Assisi receiving the stigmata, from a painting by Vincenzo Foppa.

Pacificus was a follower of St Francis

Pacificus was a disciple of St. Francis of Assisi, born probably near Ascoli, Italy, in the second half of the twelfth century; died, it is thought, at Lens, France, around 1234.

Poet Laureate[edit]

Local authors identify him with a certain William of Lisciano. Before becoming Friar Minor (Franciscan) he had been poet laureate at the Court of Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor.

Meeting St Francis[edit]

Around 1212 St. Francis preached at San Severino, in the Marches; the poet had a vision of two resplendent swords crossed on the saint's breast. Deeply impressed by this vision, he asked to be received into the new order. St. Francis gladly complied, giving him the name of Pacificus.

Introduced Friars Minor into France[edit]

In 1217 he was sent to France, where he is said to have become the founder, and first provincial, of the Friars Minor.

St Francis' Stigmata[edit]

In the Spring of 1226 Pacificus witnessed the holy "Stigmata of St. Francis".

Saint Francis summoned Brother Pacificus and sent him, with other friars, throughout the world, preaching the praises of God. The last certain date we have in the life of Brother Pacificus is that of the Papal Bull, 12 April 1227, in which Pope Gregory IX recommends the Poor Clares of Siena to Pacificus' care. Cf "Magna sicut dicitur", 1227 (Bullarium Franciscanum volume I, 33-34)

Return to France[edit]

Pacificus was sent back to France, where he later died.

It has long been mooted that Pacificus' poetic abilities were put to use turning Saint Francis' songs into verse, however there is no evidence to support this. Certainly, in the case of the "Canticle of the Sun" its simple construction would suggest that the saint needed no help.

External links[edit]

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainHerbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company.