The Little Flowers of Saint Francis (after 1337) - 617 

always went about with his spirit and his face lifted toward heaven. And during that time he never relieved his hunger at table, though he ate a little of what was placed before him, because he said that we do not practice perfect abstinence from things if we do not taste them; true abstinence is refraining from things that taste good to the mouth. And with this he had come to such clarity and light of intelligence that even great clerics came to him for solutions to the most difficult questions and obscure passages of Scripture; and he enlightened them on every difficulty.

Because his spirit was entirely set free and removed from earthly things, like the swallows he flew very high through contemplation, and sometimes for twenty days, sometimes for thirty days, he remained alone on the peaks of high mountains, contemplating heavenly things. For this reason Brother Giles used to say about him that others had not received this gift, which had been given to Brother Bernard of Quintavalle, that is, like a swallow, finding food for himself while flying. And because of this outstanding grace that he had from God, Saint Francis often and willingly talked with him by day and by night, so that sometimes they were found together rapt in God the whole night long in the woods where both of them met to speak with God.

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

Chapter 29
HOW THE DEMON IN THE FORM OF THE CRUCIFIED APPEARED SEVERAL TIMES TO BROTHER RUFINO, TELLING HIM THAT HE WAS LOSING THE GOOD THAT HE WAS DOING BECAUSE HE WAS NOT ONE OF THOSE CHOSEN FOR ETERNAL LIFE. SAINT FRANCIS KNEW THIS BY GOD'S REVELATION, AND MADE BROTHER RUFINO RECOGNIZE THE ERROR THAT HE HAD BELIEVED

Brother Rufino, one of the most noble men of Assisi, companion of Saint Francis, a man of great holiness, was once severely attacked and tempted in soul by the demon of predestination, because of which he was all melancholy and sad. For the demon even put into his heart the idea that he was damned, and was not among those predestined to eternal life, and that he was wasting whatever he was doing in the Order. And this temptation continued day after day, but he did not reveal it to Saint Francis; nevertheless he did not give up

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Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 3, p. 617

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