The Assisi Compilation - 226 

knew this, as we did, we who were with him for some time until the day of his death, and if they brought this back to mind, they would not be able to restrain their tears; and when they suffer some need or troubles, they would bear them with greater patience.

Very early in the morning, blessed Francis came down from the tower, and went to the Lord Cardinal, telling him all that had happened and everything that he said to his companion. And he added: "People have great faith in me and think that I am a holy man, and as you see the devils have driven me from the cell." He wanted to stay there as if in a remote cell, not speaking to anyone except his companion.

The Lord Cardinal was very happy with him. Nevertheless, since he knew and venerated him as a saint, he was satisfied with his decision not to stay there any longer.

Thus, blessed Francis with permission returned to the hermitage of Saint Francis at Fonte Colombo near Rieti.

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[HE HAS A VISION OF THE WINGED SERAPH DURING THE LENT OF SAINT MICHAEL ON LA VERNA]a

One time blessed Francis went to the hermitage of Mount La Verna and because that place is very remote, he liked it very much, and he wanted to do a Lent in honor of Saint Michael. He went there before the feast of the Assumption of the glorious Virgin Mary, and he counted the days from the feast of Saint Mary to the feast of Saint Michael, which are forty days, and he said: "I want to make a Lent here, in honor of God, the Blessed Virgin Mary, His mother, and blessed Michael, the prince of angels and of souls."

And it happened as he entered his cell where he was to stay constantly, he asked the Lord on the first night to show him in some way how he could know if it were His will for him to remain there.

When blessed Francis stayed constantly in a place to pray, or when he went through the world preaching, he was always anxious to know the will of the Lord, about how he could please Him better. He was sometimes afraid that, under the pretext of remaining in prayer in a remote place, the body wanted to rest, refusing the labor of going through the world preaching, for which Christ came down from heaven into this world. Indeed he would ask those he consid-

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Compilatio Assisiensis, Fontes Franciscani, p. 1681-1683


38quod quicumque fratrum scirent sicut nos, qui per aliquod tempus usque ad diem mortis eius cum ipso fuimus, quod, si vellent reducere ad memoriam, non possent se a lacrimis continere et, cum paterentur aliquas necessitates et tribulationes, cum maiori patientia ipsas supportarent.

39Et summo mane descendit beatus Franciscus de turri et ivit ad dominum cardinalem, narrans ei omnia que sibi acciderant et omnia verba que dixerat cum socio suo. 40Immo etiam dixit ei: « Homines magnam fidem habent in me et credunt me sanctum hominem, et ecce demones eiecerunt me de carcere ». 41Quoniam tamquam in carcere ibi remote manere volebat et nulli loqui nisi socio suo.

42Et plurimum letatus est dominus cardinalis cum ipso. 43Verumtamen quoniam sciebat et venerabatur ipsum tamquam sanctum, fuit contentus de eius voluntate, postquam ibi manere noluit.

44Et sic beatus Franciscus, licentiatus ab ipso, reversus est ad heremitorium sancti Francisci de Fonte Columbarum iuxta Reate.

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1Quodam tempore ivit beatus Franciscus ad heremitorium montis Alverne; 2et quia valde remotus est locus ille, tantum placuit ei quod voluit ibi facere quadragesimam ad honorem sancti Michaëlis. 3Iverat autem illuc ante festum Assumptionis gloriose virginis Marie, et numeravit dies a festo sancte Marie usque ad festum [sancti] Michaëlis, quod essent quadraginta dies, 4et ait: « Ad honorem Dei et beate Virginis Marie, matris eius, et beati Michaëlis, angelorum principis et animarum, volo hic facere quadragesimam ».

5Et factum est, dum introisset in cellam ad manendum in ea continue, rogavit Dominum in prima nocte, ut sibi ostenderet in aliquo quod cognoscere posset utrum esset voluntas sua quod maneret ibi.

6Nam beatus Franciscus semper sollicitus fuit, cum staret in aliquo loco continue ad orationem vel cum iret per mundum predicando, cognoscere voluntatem Domini, secundum quam sibi magis placere posset; 7quia quandoque timebat ne, sub specie remotius manendi in oratione, corpus vellet quiescere recusando laborem eundi per mundum ad predicandum, pro quo Christus de celo in hunc mundum descendit; 8immo, qui sibi dilecti a Domino videbantur,

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 2, p. 226

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