Beloved by even those who do not usually venerate the saints, St Francis of Assisi was not only known for his devotion to God, but also for his kindness to animals and his peacefulness for all creatures, including humans.
This traditional medal measures 1 inch high by 1/2 inch wide. It was made in Italy and is made of modern pewter (no lead). On the front, an image of the venerable Saint Francis and a wolf is portrayed in 3D. On the back, the medal reads (with a lovely flower):
Pray for Us.
On the front,
The story of St Francis and the Wolf is a great learning experience for all of us. Legend has it that St Francis was visiting a town that had been besieged by a wild wolf. Not only did the wolf kill the town's pets, but also livestock and other wild animals - and people. No one ventured past the town's boundaries for fear of being mauled or killed.
St Francis volunteered to go reason with the wolf and a local friar and some of the townspeople. Not everyone had the strength of belief in God's protection as did St Francis, so his entourage dwindled as he approached the forest.
Only he and the friar were left as the wolf charged from behind the trees, mouth open, ready to strike. St Francis made the Sign of the Cross, and, much to everyone's surprise, the wolf stopped in his tracks.
The saint explained to the wolf that he had been terrorizing the town, the animals, the people. He asked the wolf to make a pact with him to end such behavior and to become friendly with the humans, who were created in the image of God. Then, St Francis asked the wolf and the townsfolk to both agree to forgive the past and move on.
Unbelievably, the wolf moved towards St Francis and nodded his head. Then St Francis offered his hand and the wolf extended his front paw into the saint's hand. St Francis then invited the wolf to accompany him back to town. Meekly, the wolf agreed. St Francis, wolf at his side, entered the town and offered the people a lesson, taught by the wolf. He called upon the people to repent their sins and offered them peace amongst themselves and that other creature of God, the wolf.
The townspeople made a pact to keep the wolf fed and not to hurt him. In return, the wolf agreed to be peaceful as well. For two years, the wolf went from door to door, accepting food from the people of the town. Even the local dogs treated the wolf warmly, never barking.
The wolf's peaceful ways were a living reminder of the wonders of God and the patience, virtue and holiness of St Francis. When the wolf died of old age, he was mourned, but his memory was a reminder of the power and providence of the living God.
This lovely story may or may not be true, but certainly, we can see the wolf as a representation of the beloved animals in our lives.
This medal is just the right size to hang on your dog's collar or to wear on your bracelet or necklace as a reminder of the devotion of our pets to us.