Levitation in Literature

compiled by Peter Y. Chou

Jusepe de Ribera (1591-1652):
Levitation of Saint Francis (circa 1640)
Bowes Museum, Barnard Castle, Durham, U.K.

From that hour on, Brother Leo, with great purity and good intention, began earnestly to study the life of St. Francis. And because of his purity, he many times earned the grace to see St. Francis swept up to God and raised bodily from the earth— at times to the height of three arm-lengths, at times four, on occasion as high as the tip of the beech tree, and once so high in the sky and so surrounded by radiance that he could barely see him. And what did this simple friar do when St. Francis was lifted off the ground just high enough so that he could reach him? He would approach softly, embrace him, and kiss his feet, saying tearfully: "My God, have mercy on me, a sinner, and through the merits of this holy man let me find Your grace."

And on one occasion among others, as he was beneath the feet of St. Francis when the Saint was so high above the ground that he could not touch him, he saw a scroll written in golden letters descend from the heavens and alight on the head of St. Francis, and on it was written: "Here is the grace of God." And after he had read it, he saw it go up to Heaven again.

The Little Flowers of St. Francis & Other Franciscan Writings
translated with introduction by Serge Hughes
Mentor-Omega Book, New American Library, New York, 1964
"Considerations on the Stigmata, II", pp. 157-158 (Google Books)
(translation by Roger Hudleston, Heritage Press, NY, 1965)

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