The Minor Legend - 707 

that His providence snatched him, together with many others, from the dangers of death and showed forth his wonderful works on his behalf in the depths of the sea. When he was proposing to return from Dalmatia to Italy and had boarded a ship without any provisions at all, a man sent from God came, as Francis stepped aboard, with necessary food for Christ's little poor man. Then this man gave the provisions to a God-fearing man whom he called from the ship, that he might administer them at the proper time to those who had absolutely nothing. When the crew were unable to land anywhere because of the force of the winds, they used up all their food. All that remained was a small portion of the alms which was given from above to the blessed man. Because of his prayers, merits, and the power of heaven, these alms were multiplied so much that for many days, as the storm at sea continued, they fully supplied their needs until the ship reached the desired port of Ancona.

Eighth Lesson

At another time when the man of God was on a preaching journey with a brother companion between Lombardy and the Marches of Treviso, the darkness of night overtook them on the banks of the Po River. The road was exposed to many great dangers because of the river, the marshes, and the darkness. His companion insisted that he should implore, in such a necessity, divine assistance. The man of God replied with great confidence: "God is powerful. If it pleases him, he will make light for us by putting the darkness of night to flight." What followed was marvelous! He had scarcely finished speaking when, behold, by the power of God such a great light began to shine around them that, while the darkness of night remained in other places, they could see in clear light not only the road but also many other things on the other side of the river.

Ninth Lesson

The brightness of heavenly splendor went before them amid the dense darkness of the night in a fitting manner indeed. This proved that those who follow the light of life on a straight path are not able to be overwhelmed by the shadow of death. By the remarkable splendor of such a light, they were led physically and comforted spiritually. Singing hymns of praise to God, they arrived safely at their lodging, which was quite a stretch of road away. He was a truly outstanding and admirable man, for whom fire tempers its burning heat, water changes its taste, a rock provides abundant drink,




Legenda Minor, Fontes Franciscani, p. 998-999

ut eum cum plurimis aliis a periculis mortis erueret et mirabilia opera sua circa ipsum in profundo monstraret. 2Nam cum de Sclavonia in Italiam redire proponeret et navem quamdam absque ullis omnino stipendiis conscendisset, affuit quidam in ipso ingressu pro Christi pauperculo missus a Deo, qui et secum ferret necessaria victus et cuidam timenti Deum de navi ad se vocato tribueret, ut nil prorsus habentibus opportuno tempore ministraret. 3Verum, nautis propter vim ventorum nusquam applicare valentibus, omnia ipsorum sunt consumpta cibaria, sola beato viro collatae desuper eleemosynae portione modica remanente. 4Quae ad ipsius preces et merita, superna faciente virtute, in tantum succrevit augmentum, ut diebus pluribus, continua maris tempestate durante, usque ad portum optatum, Anconae videlicet, necessitatibus omnium plenarie subveniret.

Lectio octava.

8 1Alio quoque tempore, eodem viro Dei praedicationis causa inter Lombardiam et Marchiam Tervisinam iter agente cum fratre socio, iuxta Padum tenebrosa noctis supervenit obscuritas. 2Cumque periculis magnis et multis via foret exposita propter fluvium, paludes et tenebras, instante socio, quod in tanta necessitate supernum imploraret auxilium, vir Dei cum confidentia multa respondit: 3« Potens est Deus, si suae dulcedini complacet, tenebrarum effugata caligine, sui nos beneficio luminis illustrare ». 4Mirum certe! Vix sermonem compleverat, et ecce, tanta lux circa eos superna coepit radiare virtute, ut, nocte alias exsistente obscura, ipsi luce clara viderent non solum viam, verum etiam ex altera parte fluminis plurima circumquaque.

Lectio nona.

9 1Recte quidem inter densas noctis tenebras fulgor praeibat claritatis caelestis ut ex hoc ipso pateret, involvi eos non posse mortis caligine, qui directo sequuntur tramite lumen vitae. 2Nam et lucis huiusmodi splendore mirabili corporaliter directi et spiritualiter confortati, usque ad locum hospitii per non modicum viae spatium cum divinis hymnis et laudibus pervenerunt. – 3O vere praeclarum et admirabilem virum! cui suum ignis ardorem contemperat, aqua saporem commutat, abundans poculum petra propinat,

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 2, p. 707