The Legend of the Three Companions - 90 

encouraging everyone to be converted to him and to observe his commandments.

"You will find some faithful people, meek and kind, who will receive you and your words with joy. You will find many others, faithless, proud, and blasphemous, who will resist and reject you and what you say. Therefore, resolve in your hearts to bear these things with patience and humility."

When the brothers heard this, they began to be afraid. The saint told them: "Do not fear, because after not much time many learned and noble men will come to us, and will be with us preaching to kings and rulers and great crowds. Many people will be converted to the Lord, Who will multiply and increase His family throughout the entire world."

37And when he had said these things and blessed them, the men of God went on their way devoutly observing his warnings. Whenever they came upon a church or a cross, they bowed in prayer and said with devotion: "We adore you, Christ, and we bless you in all your churches throughout the whole world, because, by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world." For they believed they would find a place of God wherever they found a cross or a church.

Those who saw them, however, were greatly amazed that they differed from all others by their habit and life and seemed almost like wild men. In fact, whenever they entered especially a city, estate, town, or home, they announced peace, encouraging everyone to fear and love the Creator of heaven and earth and to observe the commandments.

Some people listened to them willingly; others, on the other hand, mocked them; and many tired them out with questions by saying to them: "Where do you come from?" Others wanted to know which was their Order. Although it was tiresome answering so many questions, they responded simply that they were penitents originally from the city of Assisi.a At that time their religion was not yet called an order.

38In fact, many judged them impostors or fools, and were unwilling to receive them into their homes lest, as thieves, they might slyly take their belongings. Therefore, in many places, after they had suffered a number of insults, they sought lodging in the porticos of churches and homes.

About this time, there were two of them in Florence, unable to find lodging as they were begging throughout the city. When they




Legenda Trium Sociorum, Fontes Franciscani, p. 1409-1411

confidentes in Domino qui vicit mundum quod spiritu suo loquitur per vos et in vobis ad exhortandum omnes ut convertantur ad ipsum et eius mandata observent.

4« Invenietis autem quosdam homines fideles, mansuetos et benignos, qui cum gaudio vos et verba vestra recipient, aliosque plures, infideles, superbos et blasphemos, qui exprobrantes resistent vobis et his quae dicetis. 5Ponite ergo in cordibus vestris patienter et humiliter omnia tolerare ».

6Cumque fratres haec audissent, timere coeperunt. 7Ad quos sanctus ait « Nolite timere quoniam non post multum tempus venient ad nos multi sapientes et nobiles f, eruntque nobiscum praedicantes regibus et principibus et populis multis. 8Multi vero convertentur ad Dominum qui per universum mundum multiplicabit suam familiam et augebit ».

37 1Et cum haec dixisset illis ac benedixisset, abierunt viri Dei devote eius monita observantes. 2Cum autem inveniebant aliquam ecclesiam sive crucem, inclinabant se ad orationem et devote dicebant: « Adoramus te Christe et benedicimus tibi propter omnes ecclesias tuas quae sunt in universo mundo, quia per sanctam crucemtuam redemisti mundum ». 3Credebant enim semper invenire locum Dei ubicumque crucem vel ecclesiam invenissent.

4Quicumque autem eos videbant plurimum mirabantur eo quod habitu et vita dissimiles erant omnibus et quasi silvestres homines videbantur. 5Quocumque vero intrabant, civitatem scilicet vel castellum aut villam vel domum, annuntiabant pacem, confortantes omnes ut timerent et amarent creatorem caeli et terrae eiusque mandata servarent.

6Quidam, libenter eos audiebant, alii e contrario deridebant; plerique eos quaestionibus fatigabant, quibusdam dicentibus: « Unde estis? », aliis quaerentibus quis esset ordo ipsorum. 7Quibus, licet esset laboriosum tot quaestionibus respondere, simpliciter tamen confitebantur quod erant viri poenitentiales de civitate Assisii oriundi. 8Nondum enim ordo eorum dicebatur religio.

38 1Multi vero eos deceptores vel fatuos iudicabant et nolebant eos recipere in domum suam, ne tanquam fures res suas furtim auferrent. 2Propterea in multis locis, post illatas eis multas iniurias, hospitabantur in ecclesiarum porticibus vel domorum.

3Eodem tempore duo ex ipsis erant Florentiae qui per civitatem mendicantes hospitium non poterant invenire. 4Venientes autem ad quamdam domum habentem porticum et in porticu clibanum, dixerunt ad invicem: « Hic poterimus hospitari ».

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 2, p. 90