The Assisi Compilation (1244-1260) - 410 

The Assisi Compilation
(1244-1260)

This work is made up of testimonies sent to the Minister General of the Friars, Crescentius d'Iesi, in response to his request of 1244 for further information on the life of Saint Francis. This collection represents the impressions and recollections of those companions of Saint Francis who, as they described themselves, "were always with him." There is little doubt that Thomas of Celano was familiar with and used much of this material in his The Desire of the Remembrance of a Soul. However, the basic text of 1246 seems to have been supplemented and revised at later periods so that it is difficult to determine the historical accuracy or objectivity of all that it contains.a

The following passages touch on the life of Saint Clare and the Poor Ladies of San Damiano and provide us with insights overlooked by the earlier biographies. They undoubtedly come from eyewitnesses who were, more than likely, the close companions of Saint Francis during the last years of his life and who, more than likely, knew Saint Clare herself.

The Assisi Compilation 13

[BEFORE DYING HE SENDS A LETTER TO LADY CLARE,
PROMISING THAT SHE WILL SEE HIM AGAIN]

During the week in which blessed Francis died, Lady Clare was seriously ill. She was the first plant of the Order of Sisters, the abbess of the Poor Sisters of the monastery of San Damiano in Assisi, who emulated Saint Francis in observing always the poverty of the Son of God.b She feared that she would die before

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Clare of Assisi: Early Documents, p. 410

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