A Collection of Sayings of the Companions of Blessed Francis - 132 

IX. HOW IT WAS NECESSARY IN THE BEGINNING THAT THE BROTHERS BE HUMBLED

1Brother Conrad told how, in the convent of Milan, a certain brother was received by blessed Francis in this way. Two brothers were staying where this man, who was a Doctor, was staying. When he saw our brothers he began to ask about their life, so they showed him the Rule, for it was the custom of the brothers of old to carry the Rule with them wherever they went.

3When he saw that the Rule was the expression of the Gospel, since he was a man taught by God and enlightened and correspondingly expert in learning, he recognized that the rule and life of the Lesser Brothers was the work of the Holy Spirit and was discovered and arranged as Christ revealed it to Saint Francis. And he said: "Brothers, I want to come to your life." The brothers said: "Sir, we have a father, Brother Francis, who accepts all those who wish to accept this way of life. So you must free yourself from the world and go to him in Assisi, at the place of Saint Mary of the Angels; and we will ask him to receive you."

6So he did everything he had heard from these brothers, and came to Assisi at the time set by the brothers, and there he found Saint Francis with the brother who had promised him assistance. Now he came with much baggage, well dressed, and on horseback. The brothers who recognized him told blessed Francis that some great learned man had come in order to accept the life of the brothers. He replied that they should bring him inside where he was with the brothers gathered. Then in the presence of that man he said: "Brothers, this one wants to come to our life, so I want to know what you think." And he began with that brother who had given him advice and said he would ask Saint Francis. Blessed Francis said: "Brother, what do you think of him? Should I accept him?" He replied: "Father, it does not seem to me that you should receive him." He questioned the other brothers similarly, and they all replied as the first one.

10Then blessed Francis said to the brothers: "Brothers, you have spoken well, for it does not seem to me that he is for us, and the majority of brothers is not with him. And if all of you had said that I should receive him, I would have received him." Then that brother who had been questioned first said to blessed Francis: "Father, you know what I think? I think this, that if he wants to do the cooking for the brothers, he should be accepted; otherwise not." Then blessed Francis asked the other brothers what they thought about what he had said. They all then said the same thing. And blessed Francis said the same. Then turning to that cleric he said: "Brother, did you hear

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Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 3, p. 132

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