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 Pope Honorius III (1219-1222) - 338 

and to retain them without any contradiction. Furthermore, We make the prohibition that it is not right for any of your Sisters to depart from this place after they have made profession in your church, or leave your cloister. No one shall dare to retain any departing Sister without the precaution of your written word. For other people it is in no wise licit to enter your cloister without special permission. The dedications of your churches, the consecrations of your altars, the ordinations of your clerics, who may have been promoted to Holy Orders you shall receive from the diocesan Bishop if they should wish to do them for you gratis and without any irregularity. Otherwise it is allowed that you approach any Bishop you prefer, who has the favor of, and is in communion with the Apostolic See and who by the authority of the Apostolic See may apply himself in your behalf to whatever you ask. A temporary or a continuing chaplain may be assumed for your church with the knowledge of the Bishop of the Diocese and We reserve the canonical correction of this same priest to the Bishop of Florence.

The abbacy of this same place now confronts you: whether you are to be succeeded by one of your Sisters. Let no subtle deception or violence proceed, except that by common consent the Sisters or part of the Sisters of a rather prudent community shall have seen that the candidate should be elected in keeping with the fear of God and the Rule of Blessed Benedict. The election is also reported to the Roman Pontiff, or to His legate a latere or to him on whom the Roman Pontiff shall have imposed this duty that they may do without delay that by which the elected is confirmed and the grace of benediction is given. Moreover, corrections of the head and also of the members that in your Church should have been corrected are reserved only to the Supreme Pontiff or to him whom He has deputized for this purpose. We prohibit, therefore, any bishop, or any other ecclesiastic or secular person to infringe upon your liberties under the pretext of custom, or in any other way dare to extort anything from you, or to presume to promulgate either against you or your church sentences of interdict and excommunication. However, when a general interdict of an area has been declared, you should close the doors, exclude the excommunicated and the interdicted, forbid the ringing of the bells, celebrate the Divine Office in a subdued voice: thus specially restraining usurers, and the excommunicated, and




Clare of Assisi: Early Documents, p. 338

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