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RP8 02r

 

joke, nicknamed him: the All-Powerful.

"I have never encountered such amiable simplicity; if some­one spoke of his birth and his admirable virtues in front of him, he wouldn't contradict or, with false humility, deny the obvi­ous, but, smiling as if someone else had been mentioned, he never seemed to take any notice. Several of the Fathers were as­tonished by what they took to be a lack of the virtue of humility; as for myself, I must avow to Your Reverence that the simplicity of little Brother Stanislaus has taught me more than mam- dissertations I've long meditated upon which discuss humility. Since this virtue is nothing more than truth, I find that our simple novice has an abundance of it. Furthermore, he exhibits a great disdain for himself; he's often said to me that all his brethren seem like angels to him and that he is unworthy to live in such company. I would have been very happy to confer the Jesuit habit on this Holy child, but it seemed to me more prudent to send him to Rome to receive our holy habit from the hands of Your Reverence." (Saint Francis of Borgia lays the letter on the table.) The rest of this letter deals with business of the province; it doesn't concern vou. Now, my son, go look for our new brother, who should arrive today; I think he's already in our church. 

 

 BROTHER AUGUSTI

O my Father! how will I dare to speak to him?... What position - are you going to give him in our house?... We will never be able to treat him with enough honor!

SAINT FRANCIS

God save me from treating him with honor! In doing so I'd ruin the beautiful edifice of his perfection; on the Contrary, I want to put him to the test again and convince myself of the virtues his superiors have seen in him. I order you, Brother Augusti, to give no sign at all that you have heard his nobility and his virtues spoken of.

BROTHER AUGUSTI, getting up.

My Father, I shall obey you; I'm going right now to seek out Brother Stanislaus.

SAINT FRANCIS

Bring him here; I'm going to hide myself in the next room to observe his speech and his manner. After a few moments of conversation with him, find some pretext for leaving; then I'll come out. 

[Scene 2]

Saint Francis of Borgia leaves with Brother Augusti; shortly there­after, the latter returns. —After knocking to no purpose on the door, he enters

  

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