The Deeds of Blessed Francis & His Companions (1328-1337) - 563 

grace, he does evil, which is nothing else but turning away from good. But you allege that the corruptible body burdens the soul. Yet Scripture does not say because of this that it takes free will from the soul, so that it could do neither good nor evil; but he wishes to say that the affections and intellect are impeded, and that even the memory of the soul is occupied with temporal things. Therefore, in the same place of Scripture we find: The earthen shelter weighs down the mind that has many concerns, because they do not allow the soul to think freely and to seek what pertains to higher realms where Christ is seated at God's right hand, to the extent that the force of the soul's powers is impeded in various ways because of many kinds of occupations and also because of the powers of the earthly body; and therefore, Brother Guardian, you spoke incorrectly."

19 He similarly refuted all the other arguments, so that the Brother Guardian again acknowledged that he was wrong, but this time from his heart, and that a creature could do something. Then Brother Giles said: "Your confession of fault is now worth something." And again he said: "Do you wish me to show you more clearly that a creature is capable of something?"

20 Ascending to a certain area, he cried out in a terrifying voice: "O damned man lying in hell!" Then he in the person of the damned one responded in a mournful voice and in a way that terrified everyone: "Oh! Woe is me! Alas! Alas!" Brother Giles said: "Tell us why you went to hell." And he replied: "Because the evil I was able to avoid, I did not avoid, and the good which I was able to do, I rejected." And questioning him, he went on to say: "What would you do, if time were given you to repent, O damned rascal?" Brother Giles answered for him: "I would throw the earth little by little behind me in order that I might avoid eternal punishment. There would be an end to that, while my punishment is eternal."

23 Turning to Brother Guardian he said: "Do you hear, Brother Guardian, that a creature can do anything?" Then Brother Giles said: "Tell me whether a drop of water falling into the sea imposes its name on the sea, or the sea on the drop of water?" He answered that both the substance and the name "drop" is brought into and absorbed by the name "sea."

24 After saying this, Brother Giles was enraptured in the presence of all who were there. He understood that human nature, in contrast to divine nature, like the drop, was absorbed in the great—yes, in the infinite—sea of divinity in the Incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is blessed forever. Rom 1:25

Amen.

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Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 3, p. 563

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