The Kinship of Saint Francis - 712 

For I trust in the Lord. Invisible enemies, the Lord's police, who punish in this world and in the next those who transgress the commandments of God and the vows of their profession, will take revenge on them, having corrected men of this world, and thus they will return to their profession and calling.

"Nevertheless, until the day of my death, I will not cease teaching the brothers at least by example and good deeds to walk by the path which the Lord showed me, and which I have already taught and showed them by word and example. Thus, they will have no excuse before the Lord, and I will not be bound to render any further account about them or about myself before the Lord."


26 Saint Francis also predicted a very great trial of his brothers that was to come because of the love of learning, and that a violent wind from the desert would arise, and would strike the four corners and completely tear down the house of his first-born offspring, and destroy all his children and daughters. And, that he might avoid the danger of the ruin of souls, like another Rechab a he sent his own to lead a wandering life: not to build palaces; not to live in the midst of cities; not to plant the vineyards of various studies, nor drink the wine of secular knowledge and worldly philosophy but, enlivened by the warmth of the Holy Spirit, placed as a law for his sons the deeds of the most perfect life of Christ.

26b Therefore he said: Let those not knowing letters not be eager to learn, etc. For until simplicity—contemptible and looked down upon in the eyes of the learned—shall have been guaranteed, they will lay claim to audacity and presumption, and, in the name of scholarship, will be glorified in praise, and will trust in the effort of their own prudence."

[THE RULE dictated by CHRIST]

27a We must note that blessed Francis wrote a rule that was perhaps incorporated into those that followed. It began: "In the name of the Father . . ." The Lord Pope Innocent the Third confirmed this by word alone, without a seal. Afterwards he wrote that which the Lord




Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 3, p. 712