As you may know from previous posts, I’m an animal person. In high school I had to choose between being a teacher and working with animals. Even though I went the teaching route, I have continued to be fascinated by creatures and the natural world.
Not surprising then, that the only christian saint I identify with is St. Francis. I first learned about Francis in college art classes, about his order and the letting go of his material possessions. I was intrigued by his mystical story and how he eventually became a hermit and preached to the animals.
Over the years he became kind of universal guardian of animals in my mind. While other Saints where busy looking out for people or helping them find things, Francis was busy making sure the animals were looked after too. There was something comforting about this inclusion of nature, a scope wide enough to protect all living things.
The statue was a birthday present from my husband. He surprised me by taking me to several different statuary stores before we found this one. I didn’t want the normal Saint Francis just standing there. The moment I saw this one I knew. I love the way the animals are gathered around attentive and at peace. I was also pleased that because it’s a bird feeder, real animals would come to him as well.
He sits in my backyard next to a crepe myrtle tree, surrounded by irises and narcissus. I fill the water part with bird feed when it’s not raining. I love to watch the birds and squirrels come to feel, sitting at his feet almost as if they were listening to a sermon.
Do you have a favorite Saint or Holy person? Do you have yard statues? I’d love to know.