The Tree of the Crucified Life of Jesus Book Five (Excerpts) - 203 

asked him if he could borrow the habit he was wearing. Then he put it on over his own, and wearing its girdle high up he went through the motions of arranging the pleats of the tunic and adjusting the capuche on his head, and making all the physical gestures he knew in his heart a generation of his sons would go in for. Then he began to walk up and down, head in the air, chest out, in a haughty, full-blown posture and, with a bellowing voice and in pompous yet flat tones, to salute the brothers, who were wide-eyed at what they were seeing, with, "Good people, the Lord give you peace!"

20When he ended, he was animated and showed his anger by disdainfully pulling off the habit and throwing it far away from him. Then he addressed Elias, with the others listening: "The Order's bastards go about just like that!" A while later, when he was in his own cheap, short, and close-fitting habit and looking, as the other first brothers did, like a man crucified to the world, Gal 6:14 he assumed a gentle and kindly expression, and all his physical gestures now evinced a tender charity and a profound humility. He began to move among those selfsame brothers and give them the greeting of the Lord's peace in such a friendly manner that this good friendliness seemed to be reflected in their faces. Then he said to Elias and the rest of the brothers: "This is the way the legitimate sons of mine ought to behave." Having done this, he sat down among them and set about encouraging them in compelling words to preserve their poverty and lower-class existence, and alerting them to the flood of back-sliding that would spring up at a future time.

48When he had a moment, an angry Elias confronted the holy father about his lack of discernment saying that those famous men who had sustained the Order were confused.

51The holy father, with the authority of the Spirit resting upon him, responded in a loud voice: "Elias, Elias, your disdainful pomposity, prudence of the flesh, and that of your own kind, have reduced my Order to nothing and have enervated all the truth of the spirit of the Gospel. But it is amazing that this God, Who knows your kind and Who wants me to leave the Order in your hands. I believe that God gave such a shepherd; He knows what kind of sheep there will be in the future."a




Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 3, p. 203