The Assisi Compilation - 165 

[62]
[HE REJECTS A MAN WHO GAVE AWAY HIS POSSESSIONS TO HIS RELATIVES]

Once blessed Francis went preaching throughout the province of the Marches. While he was preaching one day to the people of one village, a man happened to come to him. "Brother," he said to him, "I want to leave the world and enter your religion." Blessed Francis told him: "Brother, if you wish to enter the religion of the brothers, you must first distribute all your goods to the poor, according to the counsel of the holy Gospel, and then renounce your will in all things."

When he heard these things, the man left hurriedly, and, led by the love of the flesh, he distributed all his goods to his relatives. He returned to blessed Francis, and told him: "Brother, I have expropriated myself of all my goods."

Blessed Francis asked him: "How did you do it?"

The man told him: "Brother, I gave all my goods to some of my relatives who needed them."

Through the Holy Spirit, blessed Francis immediately knew that the man was of the flesh, and told him: "Go on your way, Brother Fly, because you have distributed your goods to your relatives, and you want to live on alms among the brothers."

Refusing to distribute his goods to other poor people, he immediately went on his way.

[63]
[HE IS FREED FROM A LONG-LASTING TEMPTATION]

At that time, while blessed Francis was staying in that same place of Saint Mary, it happened that a very serious temptation of the spirit was inflicted on him for the benefit of his soul. He was tormented inside and out, in body and spirit, so much that he sometimes withdrew from the close company of the brothers, especially since he could not be his usual cheerful self because of that temptation. He inflicted upon himself not only abstinence from food, but also from talking. He would often go to pray in the woods near the church, so that he could better express his pain and could more abundantly pour out his tears before the Lord, so that the Lord who is able to do all things, would be kind enough to send him a remedy from heaven for this great trial.

He was troubled by this temptation day and night for more than two years. One day while he was praying in the church of Saint Mary,

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Compilatio Assisiensis, Fontes Franciscani, p. 1556-1558


[62]

1Quodam tempore ibat predicando beatus Franciscus per provinciam Marchie. 2Accidit autem ut quadam die, dum cuiusdam castri populo predicasset, quidam homo venit ad ipsum dicens illi: « Frater, volo dimittere seculum et intrare Religionem tuam ». 3Dixit ad eum beatus Franciscus: « Frater, si vis intrare Religionem fratrum, oportet te primo omnia tua secundum perfectionem sancti Evangelii pauperibus erogare et postea tuam voluntatem in omnibus abnegare ».

4Quibus auditis, ivit cum festinatione et ductus amore carnali, non spirituali, omnia sua suis consanguineis erogavit. 5Et reversus est ad beatum Franciscum dicens illi: « Frater, ecce me de omnibus meis expropriavi ».

6Dixit ad eum beatus Franciscus: « Quomodo fecisti? ».

7Cui dixit ille: « Frater, omnia mea quibusdam meis consanguineis, quibus necessaria erant, erogavi ».

8Beatus Franciscus statim cognoscens per Spiritum Sanctum quod homo carnalis erat, dixit ad eum: « Vade viam tuam, frater musca, quoniam tua erogasti consanguineis et vis vivere de helemosinis inter fratres ».

9Ille vero statim ivit viam suam, nolens aliis pauperibus sua erogare.

[63]

1Hiisdem temporibus, cum in eodem loco Sancte Marie beatus Franciscus maneret, accidit [ut] ad profectum eius anime immissa esset illi gravissima temptatio spiritus, ita quod multum interius et exterius spiritus et corpus eius inde tribulabantur, 2immo etiam a familiaritate fratrum aliquando se subtrahebat, maxime quia, sicut consueverat, eis hilarem se ostendere non valebat occasione illius temptationis. 3Affligebat se non solum abstinentia cibi, sed etiam verborum; 4ibat sepe ad orationem in silvam que erat prope ecclesiam, ut ostenderet magis suum dolorem et lacrimas habundantius coram Domino effundere posset, ut Dominus, qui omnia potest, in tantam tribulationem suam medicinam sibi de celo mittere dignaretur.

5Cumque die noctuque ab illa temptatione amplius quam duobus annis ita tribulatus fuisset, accidit ut quadam die, dum staret in oratione in ecclesia Sancte Marie, diceretur ei in spiritu illud verbum sancti Evangelii:

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 2, p. 165

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