Salutation of the Virtues

In Francis’ Salutation of the Virtues, Francis greets each virtue in a fashion typical of a medieval troubadour. He describes the virtues each Christian must have and then concludes by interpreting the function of each.

Hail, Queen Wisdom! May the Lord protect You, with Your Sister, holy pure Simplicity!
Lady holy Poverty, may the Lord protect You, with Your Sister, holy Humility!
Lady holy Charity, may the Lord protect You, with Your Sister, holy Obedience.
Most holy Virtues, may the Lord protect all of You from Whom You come and proceed.

There is surely no one in the whole world who can possess any one of You without dying first.
Whoever possesses one and does not offend the others possesses all. Whoever offends one does not possess any and offends all. And each one confounds vice and sin.

Holy Wisdom confounds Satan and all his cunning.
Pure holy Simplicity confounds all the wisdom of this world and the wisdom of the body.
Holy Poverty confounds the desire for riches, greed, and the cares of this world.
Holy Humility confounds pride, all people who are in the world and all that is in the world.

Holy Charity confounds every diabolical and carnal temptation and every carnal fear.
Holy Obedience confounds every corporal and carnal wish, binds its mortified body to obedience of the Spirit and obedience to one’s brother, so that it is subject and submissive to everyone in the world, not only to people, but to every beast and wild animal as well that they may do whatever they want with it insofar as it has been given to them from above by the Lord.

(From the book, “Francis the Saint”)

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