I'm reading Reluctant Saint: The Life of Francis of Assisi by Donald Spoto. Myths of this famous saint are dispelled and the real story unfolds of a son of a wealthy merchant, a true prodigal son, who receives a calling, much like Paul on the road to Damascus. He changes his way of living and begins a quest to live as Jesus and his disciples did. For him this means total poverty and much fasting, and serving the poor, the sick, and all those ostracized from society. He attracts devoted followers and the "Lesser Brothers" ultimately known as the Franciscan Order begins. The book has interesting insights into the Roman Catholic church of the 12th and 13th centuries and the fifth and last Crusade.