The Kinship of Saint Francis - 693 

is called "God God."a Elias means "My God"b and therefore Elias and Thaddeus seem to mean the same thing. Thaddeus was similar in one thing to Judas the Traitor, because he was also called Judas, but only in name, not because of a betrayal, or his life. Brother Elias was somewhat similar to Brother John of Capella who left the Order. For Brother Elias was accused by the pope of following the schismatic emperor Frederick, excommunicated,c and deprived of the habit. But when he excused himself with many tears and sought forgiveness, he was absolved and his habit was restored.d


[Judas] [Brother John of Capella]


6m The twelfth companion of blessed Francis was the unhappy Brother John of Capella, who was at first John, that is, "one in grace,"e as was Judas, who was initially holy, but then became like his surname "capella," that is, caput pellens [spurning the head]. For as Judas spurned his head Christ, so did he spurn blessed Francis. He became a leper in the Order, almost insane, angry at God and at the Order. He stripped off the habit and hanged himself from a tree, so that Francis would also be conformed to Christ in having such a perverse disciple.f Whoever sees this happen to such a chosen companion should watch out if he is standing, lest he fall more severely.


[Saint Mathias] [Brother William of England]


6n As, after Christ's death, Mathias, by divine lot, was taken by the Apostles for apostleship in place of Judas, so, by lot of divine miracles, the English brother, William may be seen to be numbered among Francis's companions in place of the miserable John of Capella. For in that testimony about the Portiuncula indulgence made by Michele Bernardi, among the many companions of blessed Francis from whom he heard that the Portiuncula indulgence was




Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 3, p. 693