Straitjacket Needed in Assisi


by Becky Garrison

NAME: John (aka St. Francis of Assisi)

SEX: Male
EMPLOYMENT: Unemployed
DOB 1182 AD
AGE: 42
RESIDENCE: Homeless, says goes wherever God calls him

Psychiatric Assessment Form


St. Francis

Subject was at prayer in Mt. Alverna (Italy) on September 14, 1223 when he claims he saw a Seraph come down from heaven bearing the image of the crucified Christ replete with stigmata on hands, feet, and side. John claims to have received said stigmata. He continues to bleed profusely and refuses all medical assistance.

For episodic illnesses describe first episode:

1. ONSET: In 1206, subject heard voices telling him to “rebuild my church.”
2. PRECIPITANTS: Subject continued to visit churches at the request of said voices.
3. DURATION: 3 years during which time subject lived the life of a hermit.
4. RX RESPONSE: Subject refused all offers of financial, medical and psychiatric care.


Unable to obtain records as subject claims God is his primary care provider.


As a child: Father cloth merchant, mother devout Catholic, no outwards signs of abuse

As a teen: attended Cathedral school, became lover of luxurious dress, expansive and high strung, assisted in family business

As an adult: brief military service resulted in imprisonment by the City of Perugia (1 yr.), partially disabled, alienated from family as renounced his inheritance claiming God as his Father


AXIS I: Psychiatric Disorder
Manic-depressive with grandiose delusions (calls himself St. Francis of Assisi and a Herald to the Grand King) and psychotic features (claims to receive messages from God, talks to self and animals), Suicidal ideation (claims to die with Christ)

Axis II: Personality
R/O Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder: Need to further assess subject’s unceasing prayer life and creation of devotions and other ritualistic practice
R/O Borderline Personality disorder — subject appears to have no sense of self as he identifies himself as a living embodiment of the crucified Christ

Axis III: Medical conditions
Self-mutilation (subject wears hair shirt, refuses to show stigmata of Our Lord which he claims is imprinted on his body, confesses to running into a bush of thorns and jumping into a pool of water in the dead of winter).
R/O Body Dysmorphic disorder — subject calls his body “my brother the ass”

Axis IV: Social factors
Embraces poverty (sheds tears of joy over his impoverished)
Need to ascertain if the Orders of Friars Minor, the Poor Clares and The Third Order are truly sanctioned by the Roman Catholic Church or a cult.
R/O Bestiality
Poor diet — mixes ashes with food to dilute taste


Place subject on suicide watch. Stabilize with Prozac until can get a full psych write up to determine appropriate drug cocktail.
Meet with dietician to establish a healthy diet.

Consult with medical doctor for appropriate treatment from self-inflicted injuries.

Keep subject away from the Crusades and other religious military maneuvers to combat martyrdom.


ny guy | 11:29 pm on 3/24/2008

Imagine Samson's profile

pj | 09:47 am on 3/25/2008

Or Ole's!

Anonymous | 09:59 am on 3/25/2008

Is there a point to this?

Sam Harris | 10:12 am on 3/25/2008

Yes, if he were alive today, he would be locked up. So would most of the early church leaders.

Anonymous | 04:06 pm on 4/20/2008

Mr. Harris, are you the author?

Teddy Bear Mohammed | 10:11 am on 3/25/2008

He believed masturbation was worst then rape. I guess that explains all those priests raping young boys. One doesn’t want to end up like Onan.

SRebbe | 10:23 am on 3/26/2008

So THAT'S why grandpa married grandma's sister after she passed on...

Lilly | 04:20 pm on 3/28/2008

It keeps them from driving after dark.
Also it helps them work up an appetite.

SRebbe | 01:28 pm on 3/25/2008

Go rent Brother Sun Sister Moon from Netflix.

that calvinist doug | 02:33 pm on 3/25/2008

After reading over the symptoms list printed in the piece, I've decided to commit myself.

Peter | 11:07 am on 3/28/2008

Fine idea; just be sure the place you commit yourself to is an established Franciscan monastery...

Little D | 03:41 pm on 3/25/2008

To "anonymous" (LOVE that name!) at 9:59: "Is there a point to this?"
Um, this is religious humor and satire. This is a religious humor and satire magazine. The article is a light-hearted way to examine what is "normal" at different times during the life of the Church.
Why is this so hard for you?

rustictrollop | 09:36 pm on 3/25/2008

Brilliant! I wish St. Francis could convince the squirrels to stop raiding my bird feeders.

some other Doug | 11:27 am on 3/31/2008

Adjure them in the name of Christ.
Worked for my late uncle.

Dangerous Christian | 10:33 pm on 3/25/2008

I got a padded cell over in Zion, and it's mine, mine, mine! Just keep the scissors away from me!


Anonymous | 02:17 pm on 3/26/2008

Saints by their very nature are not like other people. Shouldn't we expect them to pray without ceasing? To reject their bodily demands, even to the point of mortification in order to attain self-control (enlightenment)? You might want to consider adding fool to your diagnosis of lunatic, as "the little poor man" held all creation in such high regard that he referred to animals as "brothers" and "sisters". I hope one day I can be as foolish as Francis was.

I know it's all about humor, but lets save the attacks for true crackpots preaching the "good news" of Hate Your Neighbor and War and Be-Rich religion.

buda | 03:32 pm on 3/26/2008

The Door should do an educational piece on humor. The difference between knock, knock jokes and satire, etc... I suck, but I'll do my best for dear anonymous.

Dear Anonymous,
When writing about any given topic satirically, we must first find the object of the satire. If we take this article for example, The object would be society, the mental health profession, modern/post-modern christianity, etc... NOT Good brother Francis. We can see this by interchanging any saint into the article and the humor still holds. (what there is of it) Since Francis is not the subject of the satire, he is only the vehicle through which the joke is made at the OBJECTS expense. thus in actuality the article is somewhat sympathetic to Mr Assisi.
One note, it's not "all about humor". Again, if we take a step back and look at big picture, upon closer inspection you may see some points other than humor start to emerge.

Peter | 11:10 am on 3/28/2008

You could put it this way: the point is that if there is any substance to the sanctity of St Francis, his honorable reputation, etc., then the criteria we use today to evaluate people's sanity (by which he fails the test) are what is suspicious (and what is being laughed at here).

that calvinist doug | 08:11 am on 3/27/2008

Anon, the bible refers to all believers as saints, not just the ones the Catholic church affirm to be.

Josh C. | 03:41 pm on 3/28/2008

Here's a bad joke I once heard.

Did you hear a fight broke out in heaven?

Some one called St. Francis a sissy

Now if you will all excuse me the chipmonk out back has some important things to say about the health care crisis

A1 | 02:01 pm on 4/01/2008

Love it Becky, keep making a scene!

A Beautiful, but Unrepentative Mind
Dr. Sigmund Freud read the file of his recent patient,
Name: Toufik Benedictus “Benny” Hinn
Age: (blank) Occupation: “Prominent, world renown Evangelist”
Symptoms: Hallucinations (“visions”), hears voices(“God speaks to me!”), talks with dead people (“Kathryn Kuhlman”), delusions of grandeur (believes he’s a prophet), Exhibits idiosyncratic/disordered behavior (blows at large gatherings of people, makes tangential statements alternating between normal reality and disjointed thoughts/actions)
Initial diagnosis: Schizophrenia
Treatment: For now, Close Observation. Forgo group therapy
"Do you mind?"
Dr. Freud looked up from the paper to across the desk. The ash had grown to an inch. He reached over, took the cigar from Benny’s lips, tapped it in the ashtray.
“I love this smoking jacket. Cut right in all the right places. Snug fit. And the latest from Italy.”
Dr. Freud hoped the straps tied in the back held. He thought back how they convinced Hinn to put it on. Using typical, standard psychological ‘stroking’: “Soft material isn’t it, Mr. Hinn. Nice quality too, it’s imported you know. Try it on. See how the arms cross the chest, just like this. The straps are genuine leather... ” Hinn resisted at first, until he was told the price for the jacket was $2,500. He ordered fifteen. All in white.
“Mr. Hinn, have you talked with God today?”
“Of course! He’s been talking to me since I was 11.”
“He talks back?” Freud’s eyes narrowed. “What’d he say?”
“All the time. Last night, he told me Jesus was going to appear at my Healing and Miracle Conference in Hawaii next Summer.”
“Un-huh…” Dr. Freud tapped the side of his jaw recalling Hinn’s previous public testimony of repentance of conducting false healings, not waiting for verification and authenticity of the claims, his misguided, unbiblical preaching and practices. Nothing had changed. Was it coming back to haunt him? “Do you think that the possibility of Jesus not showing up, caused your stress level to become elevated, resulting in your…loss of consciousness after last nights convention? Remember your wife called the ambulance--”
“DR. FREUD,” Hinn’s voice loud, agitated. “I DID NOT LOSE CONSCIOUSNESS!” He caught himself, tilted his head sideways, one way (pop), then the next (pop). “I was having a… vision. Besides my wife has some issues that need to be addressed She has a thing for enemas. Retinal detachment, I believe it’s called…”
Freud wrote down, “Defensive, Denial, places blame on others, disassociation of words”
“It’s called Anal Retentive, Mr. Hinn--”
“WHATEVER! SUSAN wants to take over my ministry. MY MINISTRY! IMAGINE HER--”
“Now now. Calm down Mr. Hinn.” Freud wrote: Possessive tendencies
“Have you ever attended a 12-step program, Mr. Hinn?”

“The only step program I’m aware of and teach is a three step plan. Make a faith vow by giving your financial support to my ministry, and God will bless you back by healing you. All your needs will be met.”
Hinn rises, starts singing his theme song as he waltzes across the floor:
When I am low,
I gaze across my lawn, and splendor,
And think of the many millions
Of thousands of dollars that I earn.
Then sings my soul,
How great I am,
How great I am.
Dr Freud watches, presses a secret button under his desk. Two large nurses aids enter.
“Hello Benny, time for your afternoon nap.”
“No, I’m not sleepy. I want to talk some more about me. I’m great you know.” His cheeks puff as takes in air. He blows at the burly guy on the left, then the one on his right.
“Yes, Mr. Hinn. We know. We know.”

SRebbe | 10:53 am on 4/10/2008

Beautimus! When do we get to see the Lego reenactment?

Scottie | 05:56 pm on 4/01/2008

Awesome job, A1!!!! Better than the original. The whole time I was reading it I was chuckling cuz I could so see Benny doing and saying these things!

Lilly | 10:16 pm on 4/01/2008

They pay good money for viable stories.
If they did not accept your story...don't piggy-back it on top of somebody elses successful story.
Scottie and A1: Stuff it!

that calvinist doug | 01:54 pm on 4/02/2008

Dang, Lilly! I enjoyed A1's piece...did you forget your script again?

Mikey | 09:34 am on 4/03/2008

I have this, um, friend, his name is, um, Ezekiel? and he like, um, goes around cooking on poop and stuff? and, um, he sees stuff? and, um, I think maybe you could do one of these workups on my friend, um, like, Ezekiel?

A1 | 01:25 pm on 4/03/2008

Just do it!

A1 | 01:16 am on 4/05/2008

Cool website, Mikey. The firefighting videos were awesome.

AnneDroid | 06:04 pm on 4/05/2008

That has really made me think. Thanks Becky. Ax

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