Sacred Texts  Christianity  Index  Previous  Next 
Buy this Book at

The Little Flowers of St. Francis, tr. by W. Heywood, [1906], at

p. 208


How Friar Juniper gave whatever he could to the poor, for the love of God

SUCH pity and compassion had Friar Juniper for the poor, that, whenever he saw any one who was ill-clad or naked, he was wont to forthwith take off his tunic or the cowl of his habit and give it to such poor man; wherefore the guardian commanded him by virtue of obedience that he should neither give all his tunic nor part of his habit to any poor man. Now it came to pass that, a few days later, he met a poor man, who was well-nigh naked and begged alms of Friar Juniper for the love of God; to whom, with great compassion, he said: "I have nothing which I can give thee save my tunic; and my superior hath ordered me in virtue of obedience neither to give it nor part of my habit to any one; but if thou shouldst take it off my back I would not say thee nay". He spake not to deaf ears; for the poor man forthwith pulled his tunic over his head and made off with it, leaving Friar Juniper naked. And, when he returned to the Place and was asked where his tunic was, he answered: "A good man pulled it off my back and went away with it". And the virtue of compassion increased so much in him that at the last he was not content with giving away his tunic, but gave books and vestments and mantles; and whatever he could lay his hands on he gave to the poor. And for this reason the friars left nothing exposed to the public, because Friar Juniper gave away everything for the love of God and for His glory.

Next: Chapter V. How Friar Juniper plucked off certain bells from the altar, and gave them away for the love of God