The Life of Blessed Francis - 548 

show us His will, so that once we know it with more certainty, we may confidently approve your holy desire."a

10 The servant of Almighty God,
giving himself totally to prayer,
obtained through his devout prayers
both what he should say outwardly
and what the pope should hear inwardly.

For when he told a parable, as he had accepted it from God, about a rich king who gladly betrothed a poor but lovely woman who bore him children with the king's likeness, and, for this reason were fed at his table, he added his own interpretation. "The sons and heirs of the eternal King should not fear that they will die of hunger. They have been born of a poor mother by the power of the Holy Spirit in the image of Christ the King, and they will be begotten by the spirit of poverty in our poor little religion. For if the King of heaven promises his followers an eternal kingdom, he will certainly supply them with those things that he gives to the good and the bad Mt 5:45 alike."

While the Vicar of Christ listened attentively to this parable and its interpretation, he was quite amazed and recognized without a doubt that Christ had spoken in this man. But he also confirmed a vision he had recently received from heaven, that, as the Divine Spirit indicated, would be fulfilled in this man. He saw in a dream, as he recounted, the Lateran basilica almost ready to fall down. A little poor man, small and scorned, was propping it up with his own back bent so that it would not fall. "I'm sure," he said "he is the one who will hold up Christ's Church by what he does and what he teaches." Because of this, filled with exceptional devotion, he bowed to the request in everything and always loved Christ's servant with special love. Then he granted what was asked and promised even more. He approved the rule, gave them a mandate to




Legenda Maior, Fontes Franciscani, p. 801-803

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 2, p. 548