The Tree of the Crucified Life of Jesus Book Five (Excerpts) - 192 

pillar, gaining access to the temple; the second is what is written on that pillar . . .a

[The Mystical Temple of God]

442a18The seraphic soul thus enters into God, after the manner of a pillar firm and straight that is brought in as one of the roof's supports. Commonly it would be either round or quadrilateral, and is enclosed in the circular space around the inside of the temple. If, however, temple was understood as a material church, then pillars would support and adorn the temple and stand in the middle of it. Francis, and any of his sons, too, stand in this manner in the holy Order and in the Church of God; just as they stand in their proper manner in the celestial court, where higher ranks are supportive of the lower, and their humble simplicity and simple spirituality relate to the lower, less united, more dispersed ranks, as the center to a circle's circumference, or spirit to body. And the character of the temple shows this, in occupying a greater amount of space than a pillar. As the foundation of the Church on the first Apostles was in faith, so in these [later apostles] is the Church built up and her final perfect state of high contemplation underpinned. For this reason is it said in Francis's regard: Never shall he go out of it. Neither apostasy nor any earthly preoccupation would draw him away from this temple which embraces the love of poverty most high, something he would never want to go out of by any means.

38Now, regarding what the text says is inscribed on him, know that in a soul like his, three things are written. The first is the most lucid vision and delightful contemplation of the three Persons of the Divinity and of the beatific glory they enjoy together. This is indicated by: I will write on himthe name of my God. For this is how the glory of God enters the soul and makes it supremely happy; it is rejoicing over the happiness of God. The second inscription is a perfect affinity with all in God's City and the company of the saints, whether on life's journey or hereafter . . . Now this city is said to come down from God out of heaven; for the full gladness of the saints springs from the immensity of God, signified by heaven, although this be inferior to God, who is infinite. In another sense, it comes down from heaven through humility, not only with respect to God, but even with respect to its special place in heaven, from which it comes down, regarding itself as unworthy.




Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 3, p. 192