The Treatise on the Miracles of Saint Francis - 402 

golden cross whose extended arms wonderfully indicated the whole world. It is written, Mt 4:4 and verified by trustworthy report, that Brother Monaldo, who was famous for his life, behavior and deeds, saw, in bodily fashion, blessed Francis crucified, while blessed Anthony was preaching about the inscription on the cross. It was his custom, established by a holy decree also for his first sons, that wherever they saw the likeness of the cross they would give it honor and due reverence. He favored the sign of the Tau over all others.a With it alone he signed letters he sent, and painted it on the walls of cells everywhere. That man of God, Pacifico, seer of heavenly visions, saw with his bodily eyes a great sign of the Tau on the forehead of the blessed father. It was many-colored and flashed with the brightness of gold.

How worthy then of reasonable human conviction
and of catholic credence
that one who so wonderfully excelled in love of the cross
should also so wonderfully become a wonder in honor of the cross!
Nothing therefore is more appropriate to him
than what is preached about the stigmata of the cross.

4This was the manner of the apparition. Two years prior to the time that he returned his spirit to heaven, in the hermitage called LaVerna, which is in the province of Tuscany, he was wholly intent on heavenly glory in the recesses of devout contemplation.

He saw in a vision a Seraph upon a cross, having six wings, extended above him, arms and feet affixed to a cross. Two of his wings were raised up over his head, two were stretched out as if for flight, and two covered his whole body. Seeing this, he was filled with the greatest awe, but as he did not know what this vision meant for him, joy mixed with sorrow flooded his heart. He greatly rejoiced at the gracious look that he saw the Seraph give him, but the fact that it was fixed to the cross terrified him. With concern his mind pondered what this revelation could mean, and the search for some meaning made his spirit anxious. But understanding came from discovery: while he was searching outside himself, the meaning was shown to him in his very self.

At once signs of the nails began to appear on his hands and feet, just as he had seen them a little while earlier on the crucified man in the air over him. His hands and feet seemed to be pierced through the middle by nails, with the heads of the nails appearing on the inner part of his hands and on the upper part of his feet, and

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Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 2, p. 402

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