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 A Mirror of the Perfection (The Lemmons Edition, 1901) - 246 

destroyed and destroy themselves, and want to destroy the whole city."

At the time of that chapter in which the brothers were sent for the first time to regions beyond the mountains, when the chapter had ended, blessed Francis said: "Dearest brothers, I must be a model and example to all the brothers. If therefore I sent my brothers into far distant countries where they will endure toil, shame, hunger, and many other types of needs, it seems to me just that I also go to a remote region, especially so that the brothers may be able to bear their trials more patiently when they hear that I am also undergoing the same thing."

And after prayer, as was his custom in all activities, he said: "In the name of the Lord and His Mother and all the saints, I choose the region of France, especially because among Catholics of the holy Church, they show great reverence to the Body of Christ, which pleases me very much. Because of this, I will gladly live among them."

And, among the other companions, he took Brother Sylvester, the priest, a man of God, of great faith and admirable simplicity and purity, whom the holy father venerated as a saint.

When he reached Florence, he found there the Lord Cardinal Hugo, the Bishop of Ostia who afterwards was pope. He rejoiced over the saint and learning where he wanted to go did not want him to do so. Thereupon the holy father said to him: "Lord, it is a great shame to me, if I remain in these regions when I send my brothers to remote parts." The Lord Bishop, however, said to him as if rebuking him: "Why did you send your brothers so far away to die of hunger and to so many other trials?"

In great fervor of spirit and in the spirit of prophecy, blessed Francis answered him: "Lord, do you think or believe that the Lord sent the brothers only for these regions? But I tell you in truth that the Lord chose and sent the brothers for the benefit and salvation of the souls of all people in the whole world and they should be received not only in the land of believers, but also in that of non-believers. As long as they observe what they promised the Lord, the Lord will minister to them in the land of non-believers as well as in the countries of believers.

The Lord Bishop marveled at his words and admitted that he spoke the truth. But the Lord Bishop did not allow him to go to France. Instead blessed Francis sent Brother Pacifico there with other brothers, and he returned to the Spoleto Valley.

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Speculum Perfectionis (minus), Fontes Franciscani, p. 1812-1814


qui destruxerunt et destruunt se ipsos et totam civitatem destruere volunt ».

8Tempore illius capituli, quo primum missi fuerunt fratres ad quasdam provincias ultramontanas, finito capitulo dixit beatus Franciscus: 9 « Carissimi fratres, me oportet esse formam et exemplum omnium fratrum. 10Si ergo misi fratres meos in longinquis partibus ad laborem et verecundiam, ad famem et alias plures necessitates substinendas, iustum michi videtur, ut ego vadam ad aliquam remotam provinciam, 11maxime ut fratres tribulationes suas magis patienter supportent, cum audierint; illud idem me supportare ».

12Et facta oratione; ut moris sui erat in omnibus agendis, dixit: « In nomine Domini et Matris sue et omnium sanctorum eligo provinciam Francie, 13maxime quia inter catholicos sancte Ecclesie reverentiam mangnam exibent corpori Christi, quod michi plurimum, gratum est, propter quod libentius cum illis conversabor ».

14Et accepit inter alios socium fratrem Silvestrum sacerdotem, hominem Dei et magne fidei et multe simplicitatis et puritatis, quem sanctus pater venerabatur ut sanctum.

15Cumque pervenisset Florentiam, invenit ibi dominum Hugonem cardinalem, episcopum Hostiensem, qui postea fuit papa, qui gavisus de sancto, et sciens quo iret noluit quod iret; 16unde dixit ei sanctus pater: « Domine, magna verecundia est michi, cum miserim fratres meos ad remotas partes, permanere in istis provinciis ». 17Dixit autem ad eum dominus episcopus, quasi ipsum redarguendo: « Cur misisti fratres tuos tam longe ad moriendum fame et ad tantas alias tribulationes? ».

18Respondit ei beatus Franciscus cum magno fervore spiritus et spiritu prophetie: 19« Domine, putatis vel creditis, quod Dominus solummodo propter istas provincias miserit fratres? 20Sed dico vobis in veritate, quod Dominus elegit et misit fratres propter profectum et salutem animarum totius mundi; 21et non solum recipientur modo in terra fidelium, sed etiam in terra infidelium. 22Et dum observent, que Domino promiserunt, sic Dominus ministrabit eis necessaria in terra infidelium, sicut et in terra fidelium ».

23Et admiratus est dominus episcopus in verbis suis adfirmans, quod verum diceret. 24Et ita non dimisit ipsum ire in Franciam dominus episcopus; 25sed beatus Franciscus misit illuc fratrem Pacificum cum aliis fratribus; et ipse reversus est in vallem Spoletanam.

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 3, p. 246

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