Why "St. Clare?"
Updated: Oct 26
I confess I admit it. My name is not actually Jacqueline St. Clare. The true name is Jacqueline Rae Beltowski. I just didn’t want the front cover of my book to read, “Jacqueline Beltowski.” It wasn’t flowing or catchy.
For a while, I really liked the penname: Jacqueline Rae. It sounded nice and it was incorporating my middle name. Well, that dream was crushed when finding that there are already celebrities with the name, Jacqueline Rae.
I needed my own. It had to be totally original! Jackie Rae. Hmmmm. Who were some of my favorite saints? St. Clare of Assisi. L
iterally every single Apostle of Jesus, but I didn’t think I should go for boy names. Sorry St. Peter and St. Thomas (Thomas is also called “The Twin,” in John 11:16, but we are not certain what the actual translation means. Still, I am a twin, so I like to think that I share things in common with St. Thomas the Apostle). Enough of that tangent! There was St. Agnes. St. Agatha. St. Maria Goretti. St. Therese. Yet, things started to just wrap back around to St. Clare of Assisi. She was my patron saint. She was my confirmation saint. I loved the name, but how could I merge it with my own? Jacqueline Clare? Jackie Clare?
Okay, I was getting somewhere…
Jacqueline Chiara. Jacqueline St. Clare.
And I hit it! The name. The pseudonym that I wanted. I liked the sound of it and it was very “me.” There is a celebrity with the same name, but she spells “Claire” instead of “Clare.”
St. Clare has a fascinating history. She was a good friend of the famous St. Francis of Assisi. She was very rich and her parents wanted her to marry. Clare did
not. She was already in love (with Jesus!). Clare left home in the secrets of the night to become a nun. She got rid of all of her fine clothes and cut her hair so she could take the veil! She opened her arms to poverty so that she could be close to her beloved Jesus. How dramatic and romantic!
Anyway, St. Clare was the first woman to write her own Rule of life for what would be called the Poor Clares. To this day, there are barefoot, habit-wearing, constantly praying nuns who embrace poverty like St. Clare. And they are praying for you.
Thank you for reading!
Jacqueline St. Clare