The Italian town of Assisi, in the central Umbria region, will project images of Giotto's Nativity frescoes onto the façade of the Basilica of St Francis over the Christmas season. The video-mapping project, which was hugely popular last year, will see Giotto's Nativity scenes beamed onto the exterior of the Basilica di S. Francesco, dedicated to I...

"Count me in, Pops!"  That was my granddaughter's response when I invited her to make a 200-mile trek through the Apennines range of mountains down central Italy. I chose this trek after reading an account by a photographer friend who had done it several years ago. A little history: A Catholic frier from a hill town in Italy lived and preached a l...

The story of St Francis of Assisi, patron of Italy, is among the most popular stories of the religious world. His story is very old but still today it is referenced as example of humility and great faith. The Basilica of St Franci, founded following his death is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Built in 1229, every year thousands of worshippers come h...

Located about 31 miles north of Assisi is the scenic hill town of Gubbio. Known for the largest Christmas tree in the world (each year, lights on Mt. Inigo above the old town are illuminated in the form of a tree), it is also associated with St. Francis, and has an incorruptible saint.  St. Francis and the wolf Today Gubbio is easily accessible fro...

Assisi, the ancient Umbrian village in the province of Perugia, is one of Italy's most important artistic, cultural and religious destinations. The town is famous for being the birthplace of St. Francis, patron saint of Italy, and St. Clare, whose religious deeds have contributed to Assisi's fame as an open-air sanctuary, a pilgrimage destination f...

Located in central Italy, in the region of Umbria, Assisi is the birthplace of St. Francis, patron saint of Italy. Since Francis was canonized in 1228, only two years after his death, Assisi has been closely associated with the cult and diffusion of the Franciscan movement in the world, and its universal message of peace and tolerance.  Assisi has...

Twelfth century Italy faced many of the same tendencies and upheavals as modern day America. An affluent society with burgeoning travel and trade at home, the Crusades causing constant conflict abroad, a wealthy church that many felt had lost touch with the people, and everywhere a “pleasure-seeking culture,” according to Glenn Myers, professor of...

Around the Christmas season, it is common to see a display of the Nativity scene: a small manger with the baby Jesus and his family, shepherds, the three wise men believed to have visited Jesus after his birth and several barnyard animals. One might ask, what are the origins of this tradition? Biblical description The earliest biblical descriptions...

Peace, universal love, respect for the natural world… Francis of Assisi, the “first environmentalist”, is the sort of saint whose teachings even the most ardent secularist couldn’t object to. His celebration of simplicity and rejection of material possessions also chime with today’s distaste for heedless consumerism. Nearly 800 years after Francis...

Fifty years have gone by since Mayor Joseph Alioto got a call from the Consiglio Comunale di Assisi announcing that the proposal to make San Francisco and Assisi Sister Cities had been approved. That decision marked a crucial moment in the history of the two towns: Assisi, the Città della Pace, (as locals always underline) is in fact Sister City wi...