The two grand basilicas at each end of Assisi, during the lifetimes of Francis and Clare, lay outside the city walls: the Basilica of Saint Francis and the Basilica of Saint Clare. It is fitting that these two great saints of Assisi were buried outside the original city gates. They walked out of the city, a passage through a gate that symbolized their rejection of the commercial values that dominated their city. They “left the world,” meaning the values of the city of their birth, to begin the new life that God had shown them among the poor and the rejected who lived beyond the protection of the city walls, those who lived on the margins of the society that Assisi represented.

—from Enter Assisi: An Invitation to Franciscan Spirituality

Enter Assisi