Papal Documents - 777 

care, which falls upon the said ministers and custodians by precept of the Rule, whenever it has been committed to them by the latter.a

6Furthermore, since that Rule clearly states that "the brothers shall not appropriate anything as their own, neither a house nor a place nor anything at all," it is not lawful for them to possess property either individually nor in common. However, the Order may have the use of places, houses, equipment, books, and other such moveable property as is permitted, and individual brothers may use these things at the discretion of the general and provincial ministers. But places, houses, or moveable goods which have been or are to be given, sold, or exchanged for the use of the brothers by any persons whatsoever, may not be sold, exchanged, or alienated outside the Order by any person in any way, unless the Apostolic See or Cardinal of the Roman Church who for the time being is the governor of the brotherhood authorizes the transaction or gives approval for it to the general or provincial ministers.b For the right, ownership, and dominion of such immobile and mobile goods belong immediately to the [Roman] church itself, except for those cases where the donors or grantors have expressly reserved these property rights and dominion to themselves. The houses and places of this Order, along with the churches and other things pertaining to them, we receive as the property and possession of blessed Peter, to which [Roman church] these brothers are acknowledged to be totally and immediately subject in both spiritual and temporal matters.c However, it is lawful for the brothers to give away moveable items of low cost and little value to people outside the Order, for the sake of piety or devotion or for any other proper or reasonable cause, having first obtained the permission of their superiors.




Fontes Franciscani, p.

debent alii Fratres curam hujusmodi, quae praefatis Ministris, & Custodibus ex Regula praecipue incumbit, cum sibi ab illis commissa fuerit, gerere diligenter.

Dicimus insuper, quod cum in ipsa contineatur exprese quod Fratres nihil sibi approprient, nec domum, nec locum, nec aliquam rem: nec in communi, neque in speciali debent proprietatem habere; sed locorum, & domorum, ac utensilium, & librorum, & eorum mobilium, quae licet habere, Ordo usum habeat: Et Fratres, secundum quod Generealis, vel Provinciales Ministri dispensandum duxerint, eis utantur. Nec vendi debent loca, domus, vel mobilia hujusmodi, seu extra Ordinem commutari, aut alienari quoquo modo, a quibuscumque personis ad usum Fratrum donata, vendita, permutata, seu quocumque justo modo vel translata sunt, vel fuerint, nisi Apostolica Sedes, vel Ecclesiae Romanae Cardinalis, qui pro tempore fuerit Oridnis Gubernator, Generali, seu Provincialibus Ministris auctoritatem super hoc praebuerit, vel assensum: cum tam immobilium, quam mobilium hujusmodi jus, proprietas, & dominium (illis solis exceptis, in quibus exprese donatores, sue translatores sibi proprietatem, & dominum reservasse constiterit) nullo medio ad Ecclesiam ipsam spectent; cui domus, & loca praedicta cum Ecclesiis, ceterisque susi pertinentiis (quae omnia in jus, & proprietatem Beati Petri suscipimus) omnino tam in spiritualibus, quam temporalibus immediate subesse noscuntur. De vilibus autem mobilibus, vel parum valentibus liceat Fratribus pietatis, seu devotionis intuitu, vel pro alia honesta, & rationabili causa (obtenta prius super hoc Superiorum suorum licentia) extra Ordinem aliis elargiri.

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 2, p. 777