The Life of Saint Francis by Thomas of Celano - 293 

Worthy of a good judgment, Dt 16:18
an example of this humility is rare,
not seen for many ages.

123 After that he hurried on, he hurried to Assisi, where a glorious treasure was being kept for him, to make all his suffering and pressing trials disappear. On his arrival, the whole region rejoiced, the city was filled with gladness, Ps 126:2 [Vulgate, Ps 125:2] a great crowd of people joined the joyful celebration, and the bright day grew brighter with new lights. Everyone went forth to meet him 2 Kgs 4:26 and joined in solemn vigil. The devoted group of poor brothers went out to meet him, each one singing sweet songs to the Lord’s anointed. 1 Sm 24:11 The Vicar of Christ reached the place and first going down to the tomb of Saint Francis, he eagerly paid his respects with great reverence. Groaning deeply, he struck his breast, and breaking into tears, he bowed his venerable head in an outpouring of devotion.

Meanwhile, a solemn assembly was called for the canonization of the saint and the eminent body of cardinals met frequently to consider the matter.a Many who had been freed from their illnesses through the holy man of God came from far and wide, and from here and there countless miracles gleamed: these miracles were heard, verified, accepted, and approved.

But then a new problem arose and, obliged by the duties of office, the blessed Pope had to go to Perugia, only in order to be able to return once again to Assisi with more abundant and special grace Rom 5:20 for the most important task.b Another meeting was called in Perugia. The sacred consistory of cardinals met in the chambers of the Lord Pope to consider the cause. All were in agreement. They read the miracles with great reverence; they extolled the life and conduct of the holy man with the highest praise.

124 “The holy life of this holy man,” they said, “does not require the evidence of miracles for we have seen it with our eyes and touched it with our hands 1 Jn 1:1 and tested it with truth as our guide.” They all leapt to their feet with tears of joy; and in their tears there was a great blessing. Heb 12:17 They immediately fixed the blessed date when they would fill the whole world with blessed joy.c

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Vita Prima, Fontes Franciscani, p. 402-403


et licet digna iusto iudicio,
insueta exemplo tamen humilitas haec
et multis retroactis saeculis inexperta!

123 1Properat iam, properat Assisium, ubi sibi gloriosum depositum conservatur, ut in eo passio universa et tribulatio ingruens exturbetur.2Ad eius ingressum tota iubilat regio, civitas exsultatione repletur, populorum turba magna gaudia celebrat, et luminosa dies novis luminaribus inelarescit .3In eius occursum a omnis homo procedit, et solemnes excubiae ab omnibus exsolvuntur.4Egreditur obviam ei pauperum fratrum pia societas, et unusquisque christo Domini dulcia cantica promit.5Applicat ad locum Christi vicarius, et in primo descensu sepulcrum sancti Francisci reverenter alacriterque salutat.6Ingeminat suspiria, pectus tundit, lacrimas fundit, et uberiore devotione reverendum caput inclinat.

7Fit interea de sancti canonizatione solemnis collatio, et super huiusmodi negotio egregia cardinalium concio saepius convocatur.8Concurrunt undique multi, qui per sanctum Dei fuerant a suis cladibus liberati, et miraculorum maxima multitudo hinc inde coruscat: approbantur, verificantur, audiuntur, recipiuntur.

9Urget interim officiosa necessitas, nova imminet causa, Perusium it papa beatus, ut superabundanti et singulari gratia pro summo negotio iterum Assisium revertatur. 10Convenitur denique Perusii rursum, et super hanc causam in camera domini papae venerabilium cardinalium celebratur sacer conventus.11Concordant pariter, et dicunt idipsum omnes;12miracula legunt et plurimum venerantur, summisque praeconiis vitam beati patris et conversationem extollunt.

124 1 « Non indiget », inquiunt, « miraculorum attestatione sanctissimi vita sanctissima, quam oculis nostris vidimus, manibus contrectavimus, magistra veritate probavimus ».2Tripudiant universi, laetantur, lacrimantur, et quidem in lacrimis illis benedictio e multa .3Iam iamque diem constituunt benedictum, in quo totum mundum gaudio repleant salutari.

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 1, p. 293