The Little Flowers of Saint Francis (after 1337) - 598 

When the Chapter ended, Saint Francis consoled them all well and taught them how to escape this wicked world without sin. With the blessing of God and his own, he sent them, now all consoled with spiritual joy, back to their provinces.

To the praise of Jesus Christ
and the little poor man Francis.
Amen.

Chapter 19
HOW GRAPES WERE TAKEN AND TRAMPLED IN THE VINEYARD OF THE PRIEST OF RIETI, IN WHOSE HOUSE SAINT FRANCIS WAS PRAYING, BECAUSE OF THE MANY PEOPLE THAT CAME TO HIM AND THEN MIRACULOUSLY IT GAVE MORE WINE THAN EVER, AS SAINT FRANCIS HAD PROMISED. AND HOW GOD REVEALED TO SAINT FRANCIS THAT HE WOULD RECEIVE PARADISE AT HIS DEPARTURE

Once when Saint Francis had a serious eye disease, Sir Hugolino, Cardinal Protector of the Order, because of the great tenderness he had for him, wrote to tell him to go to Rieti where there were excellent eye doctors. Saint Francis, after he received the letter of the Cardinal, went first to San Damiano, where Saint Clare was, the most devout spouse of Christ, to give her some consolation and then to the Cardinal. While he was there, that night his eyes became so much worse that he was unable to see any light. So, since he could not depart, Saint Clare made him a little cell of reeds, where he could rest more easily. But Saint Francis, because of the pain of the illness and because of the many mice that troubled him greatly, could not rest at all by night or by day. Bearing that pain and disturbance for several days, he began to think and understood this as a punishment from God for his sins, and he began to give thanks to God with his whole heart and voice, and cried out in a loud voice and said, "Lord, my God, I am worthy of this and of much worse. O Lord Jesus Christ, good shepherd, who have shown your mercy to us sinners in different bodily pains and sufferings, give grace and strength to me, your little lamb, that I may not turn away from you because of any illness or tribulation or suffering." After he made this prayer, a voice came to him from heaven, Jn 12:28 saying: "Francis, answer me: if the whole world were gold, and all the seas and springs and rivers were balsam, and all the mountains, hills and stones were precious stones; and if you found another treasure more noble than all these things, as much as gold is more noble than earth, balsam more than water, precious

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Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 3, p. 598

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