The Life and Legends of Saint Francis Of Assisi: Expanded Contents

INTRODUCTORY NOTE

PREFACE

BOOK I

  • His birth
  • Prediction of his future greatness
  • His studies
  • He applies himself to commerce
  • His purity, and affection for the poor
  • He is taken prisoner
  • He falls sick
  • His charity increases towards the poor
  • He has a mysterious dream
  • He wishes to go to the war
  • Jesus Christ dissuades him
  • He is rapt in spirit
  • His conversion
  • He kisses a leper
  • Jesus Christ crucified appears to him
  • Salutary effects of this apparition
  • He goes to Rome
  • Mingles with the poor
  • Is tempted by the devil
  • A voice from heaven commands him to restore the Church of Saint Peter Damian
  • His devotion to the passion of Jesus Christ
  • He takes some pieces of cloth from his father’s house, and sells them, to restore the Church of Saint Damian
  • He escapes from the anger of his father, and retires to a cave
  • He appears in Assisi, where he is ill-treated
  • His father confines him
  • His mother delivers him, and he returns to Saint Damian
  • He manifests his intention to his father, who appeals to justice, and cites him before the Bishop of Assisi
  • He renounces his inheritance, and gives back his clothes to his father
  • The poverty of his clothing
  • He is beaten by robbers
  • Retires to a monastery
  • They give him a hermit’s habit
  • He devotes himself to the leprous
  • Receives the gift of healing, and returns to Assisi, where he searches for stone to restore the Church of Assisi
  • He toils at building as a laborer
  • He lives on alms
  • His father and brother exercise his patience
  • The victories he gains over himself
  • People begin to esteem and honor him
  • He predicts something which is fullfilled
  • He restores the Church of Saint Peter and that of Saint Mary of the Angels, or the Portiuncula
  • Dwells at Saint Mary of the Angels, and is favored there with heavenly apparitions
  • He is called to the apostolical life
  • Renounces money and goes discalced
  • His poor and humble habit
  • God inspires him to preach
  • He weeps bitterly over the sufferings of Jesus Christ
  • Receives three disciples, and retires with them to a deserted cottage
  • He goes on a mission, and his disciples accompany him
  • The way they are treated
  • He receives three other disciples
  • He makes them beg for alms
  • What he said to the Bishop of Assisi, on renouncing all his possessions
  • He predicts to the Emperor Otho the short duration of his glory
  • It is revealed to him that his sins are remitted
  • He is rapt in ecstasy, and predicts the extension of his Order
  • He makes several other predictions, and receives a seventh disciple
  • He proposes a new mission to them
  • The address he makes them on their preparation for, and conduct during, the mission
  • He returns near to Assisi, where he receives four more disciples
  • He assembles all his disciples
  • Composes a Rule, and goes to obtain the Pope’s approval
  • He makes a marvellous conversion
  • He knows miraculously what will happen to him at Rome
  • He is at first repulsed by Pope Innocent III, but is afterwards received favorably
  • Difficulties on the approbation of his Rule
  • He overcomes them by an address he makes the Pope
  • The Pope approves his Rule, and accumulates favors on it
  • He leaves Rome with his friars for the valley of Spoleto
  • God provides for his necessities
  • He stops at a deserted church
  • Consults God on his mission, and returns to the cottage of Rivo-torto
  • His sufferings there
  • The instructions he gives
  • God shows him to his brethren under a most marvellous aspect
  • The church of Saint Mary of the Angels is given to him
  • He establishes himself there with his Friars

BOOK II

  • He receives many novices
  • Instructs and models them
  • Sends them to different provinces of Italy
  • What he says on this occasion
  • He departs for Tuscany, and passes by Perugia, where he makes a prediction which is accomplished
  • Many young men enter his Order
  • They build a house for him near Cortona
  • His miraculous fast during Lent
  • He commands the devils, and they obey him
  • He cures many miraculously
  • He preaches at Florence
  • Makes a prediction
  • Preaches in various places in Tuscany
  • What his friars are doing in other places
  • He preaches the Lent at Assisi, with great fruit
  • He consecrates, to Jesus Christ, Clare, and, Agnes, her sister
  • Establishes Clare and Agnes in the Church of Saint Damian
  • He erects a monastery there, the first one of his second Order, which he then instituted
  • He is troubled by a serious doubt, on which he consults his brethren
  • His doubt is cleared up by an oracle from heaven
  • He goes out to preach
  • Restores a blind girl to sight, and converts many worldly people
  • He sighs for martyrdom
  • Asks permission of the Pope to preach to the infidels
  • Makes conversions at Rome, and establishes his Order there
  • Returns to Assisi and leaves for the Levant
  • Embarks, but is obliged to put into a harbor in Sclavonia
  • Goes by sea to Ancona
  • A miracle which God performs in his favor
  • He converts a celebrated poet
  • Returns to Tuscany, and to Saint Mary of the Angels
  • He falls sick
  • Wonderfully humbles himself
  • Tries a vocation
  • Falls sick again and writes to all Christians
  • Departs for Spain and Africa, in search of martyrdom
  • His miracles and other particulars of his journey
  • His profound humility
  • He raises the dead
  • Count Orlando gives him Mount Alverna
  • God miraculously protects him
  • He preaches in Piedmont and passes into Spain
  • Works a miraculous cure there
  • The king, Alphonso IX, permits him to establish his Order there
  • He receives houses there
  • A violent sickness prevents him going to Morocco
  • His actions whilst he is delayed in Spain
  • He returns to Italy
  • His route thither
  • He arrives at Saint Mary of the Angels, and disapproves a building there
  • He goes to Mount Alverna
  • Is beaten by devils
  • Mortifies his sense, and taste
  • Makes water spring from a rock
  • Visits the mountain
  • Converts there a celebrated brigand
  • Leaves for Borne
  • Discovers some relics by revelation
  • Makes predictions, and performs miracles and conversions
  • Arrives at Borne whilst the Council of Lateran is sitting
  • The Pope declares to the Council that he has approved the Rule
  • He appoints a general chapter at Saint Mary of the Angels, whither he returns
  • He holds the chapter and sends his friars to various countries
  • He thinks of going to Paris
  • Reunites an illustrious family that had been divided
  • Rejoices in his poverty and asks of God a greater love of holy poverty
  • Saints Peter and Paul appear to him at Rome
  • His alliance with Saint Dominic
  • He goes to Florence, where Cardinal Hugolin dissuades him from going to Paris
  • He returns to the Valley of Spoleto, and sends three of his disciples to France
  • A celestial vision induces him to ask of the Pope a cardinal protector for his Order
  • What he says on this subject
  • He preaches before the Pope
  • What happened to him in the pulpit
  • The Pope gives him Cardinal Hugolin, as protector of the Order
  • He preaches in the Valley of Rieti
  • Delivers the country from two plagues, and makes some conversions there
  • The houses he builds there
  • He appoints a general chapter at Saint Mary of the Angels, for the year 1219
  • What he did during the year 1218
  • Efficacy of his prayers
  • He wishes to pull down a new house which he found at Saint Mary of the Angels

BOOK III

  • He goes to Perugia, to consult the cardinal protector
  • His opinion on the promotion of his friars to ecclesiastical dignities
  • He returns to Saint Mary of the Angels
  • His thoughts on these dignities
  • More than five thousand Friars Minors are present at the chapter he had appointed
  • He addresses the assembly, and forbids them troubling themselves about their food
  • Assistance comes to him from all sides
  • He receives more than five hundred novices during this chapter
  • He forbids indiscreet mortifications
  • The devils are incensed against him and his Order
  • He cautions his friars, and upon that gives them some instruction
  • He humbles them to preserve them from vainglory
  • He confounds those who wish the Rule mitigated
  • He wishes not for privileges which can engender disputes
  • He gives his friars instructions about their conduct to ecclesiastics
  • He obtains from the Pope letters apostolical confirming the approval of the Order
  • What he decrees in the chapter
  • He sends his friars through the whole world
  • The travels of his Friars in various parts of the world
  • In Greece
  • In Africa
  • In Spain and Portugal
  • In France
  • In the Low Countries
  • He himself prepares to go to the Levant
  • On the government of the monastery of Saint Damian, and other houses of the same order
  • He sends six of his friars to Morocco
  • What he says to them
  • He starts on his voyage to Syria, with twelve companions
  • He rejects a postulant too much attached to his parents
  • A house at Ancona is given to him
  • He appoints, by means of a child inspired by God, those who are to accompany him to Syria
  • He embarks at Ancona and anchors at the isle of Cyprus
  • Arrives at Acre
  • Distributes his companions in different parts of Syria, and comes to the army before Damietta
  • He arrives at the camp before Damietta, and predicts the ill-success of the battle the Crusaders are about to give
  • His prediction is accomplished
  • He finds out the sultan of Egypt
  • Announces to him the truths of the faith, and offers to throw himself into the fire to prove them
  • He refuses the sultan’s presents
  • Is esteemed and respected
  • The good dispositions with which he inspires the sultan
  • He obtains permission to preach in his States
  • He receives some disciples from the army of the Crusaders
  • Visits the holy places
  • Some whole monasteries of religious embrace his Institute
  • He returns to Italy
  • Establishes his Order in various places
  • Preaches at Bologna with great success
  • What he says and does on seeing a house of his Order too much ornamented
  • He makes a retreat at Camaldoli
  • Returns to Saint Mary of the Angels
  • Reads the thoughts of his companion
  • Confounds the vanity of Brother Elias
  • Abolishes the novelties introduced into the Order by Brother Elias
  • In a vision the fortunes of his Order are made known to him
  • He holds the chapter in which he deposes Brother Elias, and in his place substitutes Peter of Catania
  • He renounces the generalship
  • Will not receive anything from novices entering his Order
  • He learns the news of the martyrdom of the friars he had sent to Morocco
  • What he says on the subject of their martyrdom
  • The martyrdom of these friars is the cause of the vocation of Saint Antony of Padua
  • His friars pass into England
  • He visits some convents
  • Receives the Vicar General’s resignation, and re-appoints, by the command of God, Brother Elias to his place
  • He holds a chapter, and sends missionaries to Germany

BOOK IV

  • Saint Francis begins his Third Order of Penance
  • Draws up the rule for it
  • What his idea was in founding this Order
  • He returns to Saint Mary of the Angels
  • Sends Agnes, the sister of Clare, to Florence, to be Abbess there
  • He obtains from Jesus Christ the Indulgence of Saint Mary of the Angels or of the Portiuncula
  • Pope Honorius III. grants him the same indulgence
  • Clare and others, hearing him talk of God, are ravished in ecstasy
  • He cannot bear the distinction of persons which Brother Elias made
  • Makes a terrible prediction
  • He gives his blessings to seven of his brethren, to go and preach the faith to the Moors, and they are martyred
  • He makes a journey, which is attended with remarkable circumstances
  • Cures a cripple
  • Mixes with the poor, and eats with them
  • Foretells of an infant, that he would one day be Pope
  • He changes the bed of thorns into which Saint Benedict had thrown himself, into a rose-bush, and performs other great miracles
  • Goes to honor the relics of Saint Andrew, and those of Saint Nicholas
  • Discovers a trick of the devil
  • He visits Mount Garganus
  • His presence silences a demoniac
  • He learns at Saint Mary of the Angels the success of the German mission
  • Bids Antony preach
  • Gives Antony permission to teach theology to the brethren
  • Alexander Hales enters the Order
  • Jesus Christ appoints the day for the Indulgence of the Portiuncula
  • He obtains from the Pope a confirmation of the same day
  • Promulgates it, with seven bishops
  • He has a revelation about his Rule
  • God makes known to him that he must abridge it
  • The Holy Spirit dictates it to him
  • Some entreat him to moderate it
  • Jesus Christ tells him it must be kept to the very letter
  • His brethren receive it
  • He declares it comes from Jesus Christ, and speaks in praise of it
  • He obtains a bull from the Pope, in confirmation of the Rule
  • Is attacked by devils
  • Celebrates the feast of Christmas with much fervor
  • Our Lord appears to him as an infant
  • His sentiments on the celebration of feasts
  • Discovers a stratagem of the devil
  • He commands one of his dead brethren to cease working miracles
  • Draws up a rule for Clare and her daughters
  • Appears with his arms stretched out in the form of a cross while Saint Antony was preaching
  • Foretells a conversion which immediately came about
  • He goes into retreat on Mount Alvernus
  • His contemplation and raptures
  • Jesus Christ promises him special favors
  • He fasts rigorously
  • A piece of his writing delivers his companion from a temptation
  • What he had to suffer from the devil
  • He prepares for martyrdom
  • He receives extraordinary favors in prayer
  • His perfect conformity to the will of God
  • Jesus Christ crucified appears to him under the figure of a Seraphim
  • Receives the impression of the wounds of Jesus Christ
  • He composes canticles full of the love of God
  • Tells his brethren of the Stigmata
  • They are seen and touched
  • He leaves Mount Alvernus, to return to Saint Mary of the Angels
  • Cures a child of dropsy
  • Other miracles which he performed on the way
  • He strengthens himself with new fervor in the service of God
  • His patience in great sufferings
  • His desires for the salvation of souls
  • His prayer in suffering
  • God assures him of his salvation
  • He thanks Him in a canticle
  • He learns the time of his death, and rejoices at it
  • He has various illnesses, and suffers extreme pain
  • He multiplies the grapes in a vineyard
  • God gives him sensible consolation
  • A heated iron is applied to the temple, and he feels no pain from it
  • He weeps incessantly, and says he does so to expiate for his sins
  • He prefers the danger of losing his sight to restraining his tears
  • His gratitude towards his physician
  • A miracle is worked by some of his hair, in favor of this physician
  • He miraculously heals a canon
  • His sufferings diminish
  • Goes to preach
  • Drives away a devil
  • Foretells a sudden death, and it comes about
  • Cures Saint Bonaventura in his infancy
  • All his sufferings increase
  • Causes to be found for the love of God what could not be found for money
  • They take him back to Assisi
  • They take him to Sienna
  • He answers difficult questions, and foretells several things
  • He causes the blessing which he gave to his brethren to be written
  • They take him to Celles, and thence to Assisi
  • The bishop has him taken to his palace
  • The state of his Order at the time of his last illness

BOOK V

  • The violence of his illness does not prevent him from exhorting his brethren
  • He is touched at the fatigue which his illness caused them
  • Thanks God for the pains he suffered
  • Dictates a letter to Clare and her daughters
  • Rejoices and thanks God for his approaching death
  • Blesses his children
  • Has himself carried to S. Mary of the Angels
  • Blesses the town of Assisi
  • Informs a pious widow of his approaching death
  • Blesses his brethren a second time, and makes them eat a bit of bread, blessed by his hand
  • Gives a special blessing to Bernard, the eldest of his children
  • What we may presume were his dispositions in receiving the last sacraments
  • He stretches himself naked on the bare ground
  • Desires to be buried in the place of execution
  • Exhorts his brethren
  • He has the praises of God sung when at the point of death
  • He speaks to his children, and blesses them for the last time
  • Has the passion of Jesus Christ read to him
  • He recites the 141st psalm, and dies after the last verse
  • Miraculous proofs of his beatitude
  • State of his body after death
  • The Stigmata are seen and touched publicly
  • His obsequies
  • Clare and her daughters see and kiss the Stigmata
  • He is buried at Assisi, in the church of S. George
  • The circular written after his death
  • His canonization
  • The Church of Saint Francis at Assisi
  • He is buried there
  • Researches are made to find the sacred body
  • The mission of Saint Francis
  • The fruits of his labor

CONCLUSION

  • Devotion of Saint Francis towards Jesus Christ crucified
  • To what a degree he loved poverty
  • How great was the austerity of his life
  • His humility
  • His obedience
  • His gift of prayer and contemplation
  • His love of God
  • His sentiments of filial love on the mystery of the Incarnation
  • On the fast of Jesus Christ in the desert
  • On the mystery of the Eucharist
  • Saint Francis, in his humility, would not be made priest
  • His devotion towards the Mother of God
  • Towards the angels and saints
  • His charity towards his neighbor
  • His zeal for the salvation of souls
  • His affection for the poor
  • The affection of his heart for all creatures
  • The pains he took to lead his brethren to perfection
  • His tender charity towards his brethren
  • His discretion and wisdom in the government of the Order
  • His supernatural and acquired knowledge
  • The efficacy of his words
  • His supernatural and miraculous gifts
  • He drives away devils
  • Brings the dead to life
  • Heals the sick
  • Has the gift of prophecy and discernment of spirits
  • He commands animals, and is obeyed
  • He performs many other miraculous actions
  • The great honors which were paid to him
  • His character and appearance
  • In what sense he was simple