The Treatise on the Miracles of Saint Francis - 400 

be considered unimportant,
and not a portent of great things to come?
Never since the time of the apostles was there
such an outstanding, such an amazing warning to the world!

Wonderful, its sterile fruitfulness.
Sterile, I say, and dried out this poor little Religion:
the moisture of earthly things remains far from it.
Sterile indeed the one who neither reaps nor gathers into barns, Mt 6:26
nor carries a bulging wallet on the way of the Lord. Acts 18:25
And yet this saint believed, hoping against hope,
that he would inherit the world,
not thinking his own body as good as dead

and the womb of Sarah sterile.
God's power brought forth from her the Hebrew people.
He was not sustained
by full cellars,
by overflowing storehouses,
or bountiful possessions;
but the same poverty that makes him worthy of heaven
marvelously nourished him in the world.
O weak one of God, stronger than men,
you both bring glory to our cross
and also sustain our poverty with plenty!
We then saw that vine spreading, in the briefest time,
extending its fruitful branches from sea to sea.
People came running from everywhere, Ps 80:12 [Vulgate, Ps 79:12]
the crowds swelled,
and were quickly joined as living stones 1 Pt 2:5

to the grand structure of this marvelous temple.
Not only do we see it multiply with children in a short time;
we also see it become famous,
for we know that many of those it bore
have obtained the palm of martyrdom,a
and we venerate many others enrolled in the catalog of saintsb
as confessors of most perfect holiness.
But let us turn now to him who is the head of them all.




Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 2, p. 400