A Letter to the Entire Order - 116 

A Letter to the Entire Order

The promulgation of the papal document, Quia populares tumultus, December 3, 1224, granting the friars permission to celebrate the Eucharist in their churches and oratories, may well have occasioned this letter.a At the same time, its themes reflect many of the concerns of The Testament which was written during the last days of Francis’s life.b While a number of manuscripts entitle the work “A Letter to a General Chapter,” others prefer the present title since it reflects more accurately the universal audience of all the brothers mentioned in verse 2.

1In the name of the most high Trinity and holy Unity: the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.

2To all my reverend and dearly beloved brothers: to Brother A.,c the General Minister of the Order of Friars Minor, its lord, and the other general ministers who will come after him, and to the ministers, custodians, humble priests of this same brotherhood in Christ, and to all simple and obedient brothers, from the first to the last: 3Brother Francis, a worthless and weak man, your very little servant sends his greetings in Him Who has redeemed and washed us in His Rv 1:5 most precious blood. 4When you hear His name, the name of that Son of the Most High, Lk 1:32 our Lord Jesus Christ, Who is blessed forever, adore His name with fear and reverence, prostrate on the ground! 2 Ezr 8:6

5Listen, sons of the Lord and my brothers, pay attention to my words. Acts 2:14 d 6Incline the ear Is 55:3 of your heart and obey the voice of the Son of God.




Epistola toti ordina missa una cum oratione..., Fontes Franciscani, p. 99

Epistola toti ordini missa una cum oratione Omnipotens, Aeterne Deus

1In nomine summae Trinitatis et sanctae Unitatis Patris et Filii et Spiritus Sancti. Amen.

2Reverendis et multum diligendis fratribus universis, fratri A., generali ministro religionis minorum fratrum, domino suo, et ceteris ministris generalibus, qui post eum erunt, et omnibus ministris et cuistodibus et sacerdotibus fraternitatis eiusdem in Christo humilibus et omnibus fratribus simplicibus et obedientibus, primis et novissimis 3frater Franciscus, homo vilis et caducus, vester parvulus servulus, salutem, in eo qui redemit et lavit nos in pretiosissimo sanguine suo, 4cuius nomen audientes adorate eum cum timore et reverentia proni in terra, Dominus Jesus Christus, Altissimi Filius nomen illi, qui est benedictus in saecula.

5Audite, domini filii et fratres mei, et auribus percipite verba mea. 6Inclinate aurem cordis vestri et obedite voci Filii Dei.

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 1, p. 116