The vocation of Sylvester

Vocations “come and follow me”

The vocation of Sylvester

Legend of the Three Companions (L3C 30-31: FAED II, 86-87)

While Lord Bernard was giving all his possessions to the poor, blessed Francis was at his side assisting him, glorifying and praising the Lord in his heart, in awe at the astounding work of the Lord. A priest named Sylvester, from whom the blessed Francis had purchased stones for the repair of the church of San Damiano, came. Seeing so much money being given away on the man of God’s advice, he was consumed by a burning passion of greed, and said to him: “Francis, you did not completely pay me for the stones which you bought from me.” The scorner of greed, hearing him complaining unjustly, approached Lord Bernard, and putting his hand into his cloak where the money was, in great fervor of spirit, filled it with a handful of coins, and gave them to the disgruntled priest. He filled his hand with money a second time, and said to him: “Do you now have full payment, Lord Priest?” “I have it completely, brother,” he replied. Overjoyed, he returned home with his money.
But after a few days that same priest, inspired by the Lord, began to reflect on these things blessed Francis had done, and he said to himself: “Am I not a miserable man? Old as I am, don’t I still covet and desire the things of this world? And this young man despises and scorns them all for the love of God!” […]
When he woke, therefore, the priest understood and resolutely believed that Francis was indeed Christ’s friend and servant, and the religion he founded would spread all over the world. From then on he began to fear God and to penance in his own home. At last, after a little while, he entered the Order in which he lived excellently and ended gloriously.

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