The Form of Life of Saint Clare - 123 

4Let the abbess, on her part, be so familiar with them that they can speak and act with her as ladies do with their handmaid. 5For this is the way it must be: the abbess should be the handmaid of all the sisters.a

6Moreover, I admonish and exhort the sisters in the Lord Jesus Christ to beware of all pride, vainglory, envy, avarice, care and anxiety about this world, detraction and murmuring, dissension and divi- sion. 7Let them be always eager, however, to preserve among themselves the unity of mutual love which is the bond of perfection.b

8Let those who do not know how to read not be eager to learn. 9Let them direct their attention to what they should desire above all else: to have the Spirit of the Lord and Its holy activity,c 10to pray always to Him with a pure heart, and to have humility, patience in difficulty and infirmity, 11and to love those who perse- cute, blame, and accuse us, 12for the Lord says: Blessed are those who suffer persecution for the sake of justice, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 13But whoever perseveres to the end will be saved.

[Chapter Eleven: The Custody of the Enclosure]

1Let the portress be mature in her manner of acting, discern- ing, and of a suitable age. Let her remain in an open cell without a door during the day.d 2A suitable companion may be assigned to her who may take her place in everything whenever necessary.




Regula [Clarae], Fontes Franciscani, p. 2304-2305

4Abbatissa vero tantam familiaritatem habeat circa ipsas, ut dicere possint ei et facere sicut dominae ancillae suae. 5Nam ita debet esse quod abbatissa sit omnium sororum ancilla.

6Moneo vero et exhortor in Domino Iesu Christo, ut caveant sorores ab omni superbia, vana gloria, invidia, avaritia, cura et sollicitudine huius saeculi, detractione et murmuratione, dissessione et divisione. 7Sint vero sollicitae semper invicem servare mutuae dilectionis unitatem, quae est vinculum perfectionis.

8Et nescientes litteras non curent litteras discere; 9sed attendant quod super omnia desiderare debent: habere spiritum Domini et sanctam eius operationem, 10orare semper ad eum puro corde et habere humilitatem, patientiam in tribulatione et infirmitate, 11et diligere eos qui nos persequuntur, reprehendunt et arguunt; 12quia dicit Dominus: Beati qui persecutionent patiuntur propter iustitiam, quoniam ipsorum est regnum caelorum. 13Qui autem perseveraverit usque in finem hic salvus erit.

[Caput XI - De clausurae custodia].

1Ostiaria sit matura moribus et discreta, sitque convenientis aetatis, quae ibidem in cellula aperta sine ostio in die resideat. 2Sit ei et aliqua socia idonea assignata, quae cum necesse fuerit, eius vicem in omnibus exsequatur.

Clare of Assisi: Early Documents, p. 123