St. Francis’ historic papers set to debut in Brooklyn

December 10, 2014 Anna Spivak
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The middle ages will come alive in Brooklyn as a set of documents written by St. Francis of Assisi will be on display at Brooklyn’s own historic Borough Hall.

In their first trip out of Italy in 700 years, the manuscripts written by the friar and soldier born Francesco di Bernardone will be on display at Brooklyn Borough Hall, 209 Joralemon Street, from December 17 through January 14. It is the only place in the United States where the papers will be able to be seen—given that the United Nations, the only other place in North America where the papers will be displayed, is international terrain.

The Brooklyn borough president’s office hosted a press conference on Wednesday, December 10, to announce the imminent arrival of the papers and what it means for Brooklyn.

“Brooklyn is well-versed in making history, and history is certainly being made with our first-ever public display in the United States of the manuscripts of St. Francis of Assisi,” said Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams. “This amazing exhibit is not only important for those who are of the Catholic faith, but rather all Brooklynites.

“What St. Francis represented is the enduring spirit of looking out for the poor and finding ways to improve the lives of mankind and humankind,” said Adams. “These values are the values of One Brooklyn, which we work to embody in our diverse and dynamic communities.”

“The three values St. Francis represented were peace, brotherhood and concern for the common good,” added Brother William Boslet, Superior General of the Franciscan Brothers of Brooklyn. “I think they’re universal values, but are particularly important in this day and age when all of those values are being challenged.”

Additional reporting contributed by Milo Taibi.


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