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July 31, 2019

Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone invites all Catholics and all concerned people to join in a Novena (nine days of prayer) to ask the intercession of Our Lady of Guadalupe--patroness of unborn children--to defeat California State Senate Bill 24 (SB 24).

The nine days of prayer began August 3. On Sunday, August 11, the Archbishop will celebrate Mass at 9:00 a.m. in the Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption to conclude the Novena. The archbishop urges Californians not only to pray but also to contact their lawmakers to express their opposition to SB 24.

Time is short. The bill has passed the state Senate, has been approved by all state Assembly committees, and awaits a floor vote when the State Legislature, currently in recess, reconvenes on Monday, August 12. SB 24 mandates that the health centers at all state colleges and universities in California must provide "abortion by medication techniques." As SB 24 states, "All California public university campuses have oncampus student health centers, but none of these health centers currently provide abortion by medication techniques." For more information including a link to read the entire bill, visit:



"For this place is truly holy and is the dwelling place of God."

Porziuncola Chapel

The very ancient chapel, venerated for an apparition of angels within it, was originally property of the Benedictines of Subasio. It was located on a piece of land known as the Porziuncola; this name became attached to the chapel.

After a long period of abandonment, it was restored by St. Francis. Here he was given a clear understanding of his vocation. He founded here the Order of Friars Minor (1209), establishing here his home, St. Bonaventure tells us, "because of his reverence for the angels, and of his great love of the Mother of Christ" to whom the little church is dedicated. He obtained the use of the land and the chapel from the Benedictines and made this place the center of his new religious family. On March 28, 1211, (St.) Clare, daughter of Favarone di Offreduccio, received here, from the hands of St. Francis, the religious habit, and thus began the Order of Poor Clares. In 1216, in a vision, St. Francis, obtained from Jesus Christ the indulgence called the Pardon of Assisi. It was ratified by Pope Honorius III. At this center and heart of the Franciscan Order, St. Francis yearly assembled all the Friars in Chapter to discuss the Rule, and renew their dedication to the Gospel life. The Chapter of Mats (1221) was attended by more than 5000 friars.

"See to it, my sons, that you never abandon this place. If you are driven out from one side, go back in at the other. For this place is truly holy and is the dwelling place of God. Here, when we were but a few, the Most High gave us increase; here he enlightened the hearts of his poor ones by the light of his wisdom; here he set our wills on afire with the flame of his love. Here he who prays with a devout heart will obtain what he prays for and he who offends will be punished more severely. Wherefore, my sons, consider this dwelling place of God to be worthy of all honour, and with all your, with voice of joy, and praise, give glory to the Lord in this place."

(Words of the dying St. Francis, Celano 1, n. 106)

INDULGENCES GRANTED for the Historic St. Francis Church & Porziuncola Nuova Chapel. See Entire Article.

Welcome to the National Shrine of Saint Francis of Assisi and the namesake of our city, San Francisco. The National Shrine is the property of the Archdiocese of San Francisco, and it consists of our historic Church built in 1849 and our beautiful Chapel (La Porziuncola Nuova, or Little Portion) built in 2008.

The National Shrine is not only located in the heart of San Francisco where Italian North Beach and Chinatown meet, it is "The Heart of San Francisco" in a singular way where Heaven and Earth meet like no other place in our city.

One of the reasons this Shrine is unique is its very urban location in the second most densely populated city in the country. But in the midst of an often rowdy, noisy, bawdy, and chaotic neighborhood (a bronze marker in the sidewalk reminds us that this was once "The Barbary Coast"), the Shrine's Church and the Porziuncola offer an oasis of peace, quiet, serenity, and refreshment to the thirsty spirit.

Saint Francis was very aware that all of God's creation is holy and that it reflects his beauty, truth, and goodness. But Francis appreciated churches, especially, because he knew that in these sacred spaces people could find and recognize the presence of God's spirit more easily than "in the world." That is why the Little Poor Man of Assisi dedicated a good portion of his life to rebuilding old abandoned churches, like San Damiano (where he had heard the voice of Jesus Christ) and Saint Mary of the Angels Porziuncola (or Little Portion).

We hope during your online visit to The National Shrine of Saint Francis of Assisi you will experience something of the reverence, tranquility, and blessings people find when they enter our actual doors. Thus, we invite you to take the virtual tours, light a candle, ask for our prayers, and to return to this site as often as you like, while allowing "The Heart of San Francisco" to become a place where your own heart can find a haven of rest. Yes, leave your heart in San Francisco!

We also invite you to take the opportunity to participate in the mission of The National Shrine of Saint Francis of Assisi by sharing with us your financial support, either by making a donation or by shopping at our online store. But even if you're unable to give anything at this time, please know that you are always welcome to visit us and to support our work with your prayers. We sincerely appreciate and thank you for your generosity of spirit.

St. Francis of Assisi Mission

The National Shrine of Saint Francis of Assisi, as with The Archdiocese of San Francisco, has a mission that is rooted in the Gospels and the social teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. Central to that teaching is the inherent dignity and sacredness of each human being.

We educate and advocate on this dignity in relation to the unborn child, the prisoner on death row, the homeless and hungry person on our streets, the elderly, the ill and disabled faced with the threat of assisted suicide, the stranger in our midst, and the poor and marginalized in our society and throughout the world. We are neither right nor left, Republican nor Democrat, but we formulate our agenda by the standard of human dignity that is reflected in our faith tradition.

  1. It is the purpose of the National Shrine of Saint Francis of Assisi to provide more abundant means of salvation, through the rich liturgical and devotional life of the Roman Catholic Church for the Christian faithful, including those who come as pilgrims from around the world to the City of San Francisco and the greater San Francisco Bay Area, who seek to encounter the living God through religious worship and special devotion to St. Francis of Assisi and the Franciscan saints.
  2. It is the further purpose of the National Shrine to welcome, share and extend this same spiritual experience and devotion to St. Francis of Assisi and the Franciscan saints to pilgrims and visitors of all faiths, religions, denominations, and nationalities.
  3. The Capuchin Franciscan Friars (OFM Cap.) and Staff of the National Shrine, therefore, provide a pastoral (i.e., welcoming and prayerful) environment with the hope that in the spirit of St. Francis of Assisi, spiritual nourishment healing and reconciliation will be found by all who visit the Shrine.