CLARE (CLARA) (Saint) Virgin (August 12) (13th century) A maiden of Assisi, daughter of a knight, who was the first woman to embrace the life of utter poverty and unremitting austerity taught by Saint Francis, the founder of the Order of Friars Minor. Consecrated to God by the Seraphic Patriarch, she governed for forty-two years, in the Fear of God, the first convent of Franciscan Sisters, insisting to the end on the full observance of the Rule. The one favour she ever asked of the Holy See was that the convent might always remain without worldly goods of any kind. She survived Saint Francis, whose faithful Counsellor she had been, dying in the year 1253, and was canonised two years afterwards. Saint Clare is represented with a monstrance in her hand in memory of her having in this attitude miraculously saved her convent from assault and pillage.