The Assisi Compilation - 133 

way of simplicity. I do not want you to mention to me any Rule, whether of Saint Augustine, or of Saint Bernard, or of Saint Benedict.a And the Lord told me what He wanted: He wanted me to be a new fool in the world. God did not wish to lead us by any way other than this knowledge, but God will confound you by your knowledge and wisdom. But I trust in the Lord's police that through them He will punish you, and you will return to your state, to your blame, like it or not."

The cardinal was shocked, and said nothing, and all the brothers were afraid.

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[HIS EXPLANATION OF THE BROTHERS' RELATIONSHIP TO CLERICS]

[Although] blessed Francis [wanted his sons to keep peace with all and to behave as little ones toward everyone, he taught them to be particularly humble toward clerics by his word and showed them by his example.

He used to say: "We have been sent to help clerics for the salvation of souls so that we may make up whatever may be lacking in them.b Each shall receive a reward, not on account of authority, but because of the work done. Know then, brothers, that the] profit or [good of souls is what pleases God the most, and this is more easily obtained through peace with the clergy than fighting with them. If they should stand in the way of the people's salvation, revenge is for God,and he will repay them in due time. So, be subject to prelates so that, as much as possible on your part no jealousy arises. If you are children of peace, Lk 10:6 you will win over both clergy and people for the Lord, and the Lord will judge that more acceptable 1 Pt 2:5 than only winning over the people, while scandalizing the clergy. Cover up their failings, make up for their many defects, and when you have done Lk 17:10 this, be even more humble."]

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Compilatio Assisiensis, Fontes Franciscani, p. 1497-1499


5 « Fratres mei, fratres mei, Deus vocavit me per viam humilitatis et ostendit michi viam simplicitatis: nolo quod nominetis michi Regulam aliquam, neque sancti Augustini, nec sancti Bernardi, nec sancti Benedicti. 6Et dixit Dominus michi, quod volebat, quod ego essem unus novellus pazzus in mundo; et noluit nos ducere Deus per aliam viam, quam per istam scientiam; sed per vestram scientiam et sapientiam Deus vos confundet. 7Sed confido ego in castaldis Domini, quod per ipsos vos puniet, et adhuc redibitis ad vestrum statum, ad vestrum vituperium; velitis, nolitis ».

8Tunc Cardinalis obstupuit et nichil respondit, et fratres omnes timuerunt.

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1Licet beatus Franciscus cum omnibus hominibus pacem habere filios vellet atque universis parvulos se prebere, clericis tamen maxime humiles esse verbo docuit, et monstravit exemplo.

2Dicebat enim: « In adiutorium clericorum missi sumus ad animarum salutem, ut quod in illis invenitur minus suppleatur a nobis. 3Recipiet unusquisque mercedem non secundum auctoritatem, sed secundum laborem. 4Scitote inquit, fratres, Deo esse gratissimum animarum lucrum vel fructum, meliusque illud consequi posse pace, quam discordia clericorum. 5Quod si ipsi salutem impediunt popolorum, Dei est ultio et ipse retribuet eis in tempore. 6Ideo estote subiecti g prelatis, ne, quantum ex vobis est, zelus aliquis surgat. 7Si filii pacis fueritis clerum et populum Deo lucrabimini, quod acceptabilius iudicat Dominus, quam populum solum, clero scandalizato, lucrari. 8Tegite, inquit, eorum casus, multiplices supplete defectus, et cum hoc feceritis, humiliores estote ».

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 2, p. 133

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