The Deeds of Blessed Francis & His Companions (1328-1337) - 540 

temptation as if he had never felt it, and the harmful ardor was turned into the ardor of the Holy Spirit; and his whole self burned for God because, as he was leaning against a burning coal, namely Brother Simon, he was wholly rekindled in the Lord. So later on when a criminal had been captured and was to have both his eyes torn out, this young man in fervor of spirit boldly approached the ruler in full council and with many tears and prayers begged him to grant him this grace: to take one of his eyes and leave one to the other man. When they saw the piety of the young man and his burning charity, they pardoned both of them. I observed this young man as an eyewitness.

17 That same Brother Simon one day was staying in the woods, feeling great sweetness from the Lord, but some birds, called gaulle, were preventing this by their loud noise and cries. He ordered them in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ never to come there again. Amazing to say, for the next fifty years and more at that place of Brunforte in the Custody of Fremo, those birds were never seen or heard in the whole area around the place and everywhere in the distance. And I, Brother Ugolino of Monte Santa Maria stayed there for three years and observed this miracle as a fact, well-known both to lay persons and to the brothers of that custody.

To the praise of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Amen.

LVI
HOW BROTHER JOHN OF LA VERNA WAS RAPT IN AN ABYSS OF DIVINITYa

1 After Brother John denied himself all the pleasures of this world, he was solicitous in finding his consolation in God alone. As a result, when the principal solemnities of our Lord Jesus Christ occurred, he by the grace of God enjoyed new consolations and marvelous revelations.

2 Therefore, it happened that the Nativity of our Savior was approaching, when he was sure that he could expect consolation from the humanity of the blessed Christ, the Holy Spirit, who knows how to dispense his gifts according to time and place, as he wishes, not paying attention to the proposal of the one wishing or of the one running, but to the wisdom of the Lord of mercy, did not give Brother John the consolation he expected from the humanity of Christ, but showed him rather such a most fervent love from the goodness of

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Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 3, p. 540

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