Anthony: the original Franciscan

Anthony did not imitate Francis. They are two clearly different people. They belonged to different social and cultural backgrounds, and had a different temperament and evangelical style.
Anthony’s foreign origin, his education and his skills brought a providential “contamination" to the burgeoning Order. Anthony was part of a Paduan and international section of the Order that developed far from Francis’ birth town, and which matured an apostolic activity in close connection with the Roman Curia, with the Order of Preachers, with its areas of study and the local churches.

The novelties they introduced is the direct assumption of duties of ecclesiastical reform led by Rome. Through them, the line of pastoral guidance, teaching, education and training inside the church and in the society, prevails over the simple profession of the Gospel among the poor and marginalized in a life of service and humble submission.
Yet Anthony is and remains deeply Franciscan, because he accepts and lives the fundamental principles of Franciscanism: love for poverty and dedication to the poor, missionary activity, the contemplative dimension and respect for Church hierarchy.