The Timeless Influence of Saint Francis on Animal Welfare
Saint Francis of Assisi, born in the late 12th century, has left an indelible mark on the world, particularly in the realm of animal rights. His teachings and actions have been a cornerstone for animal welfare movements, transcending time and geography. This article delves into the life, philosophies, and impact of Saint Francis, shedding light on why he remains a pivotal figure in advocating for the rights of all animals.
BROOKSVILLE, MAINE — Food columnist Avery Yale Kamila spoke July 30 to a full house at The Good Life Center about “Vegetarianism & The Good Life.” Kamila discussed her work to unearth 300 years of lost vegetarian history in Maine. Her research reveals that the pursuit of the Good Life has always been integral to Maine vegetarianism. Kamila said Father Sebastian Rale is the earliest vegetarian she has documented in Maine. She shared an excerpt of a 1722 letter Rale wrote where he reported exclusively eating what we would today call vegan meals. She also discussed how vegetarianism was part of the early 19th century Temperance movement, talked about the significance of the 1834 Sylvester Graham riot in Portland and surveyed Maine native Ellen G. White’s influence on the national vegetarian movement.
Kamila capped her presentation with an overview of Helen and Scott Nearing’s influential vegetarianism. The Nearings moved to Brooksville in 1952 to create their Forest Farm, which is now the nonprofit The Good Life Center. They are the authors of the 1970 vegetarian bestseller "Living the Good Life." Helen was a lifelong vegetarian, which Kamila said is rare, and Scott adopted vegetarianism in 1917. She also said current reporting on the Nearings often omits their vegetarianism, which she said was central to The Good Life.