Page:Historical Works of Venerable Bede vol. 2.djvu/143

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71
OF VENERABLE BEDE.

would bequeath to the brethren, he began to make a few strong admonitions respecting peace and humihty, and told me to beware of those persons who strove against these virtues, and would not practise them. He enjoins charity and unanimity. "Have peace," said he, "and divine charity ever amongst you: and when you are called upon to deliberate on your condition, see that you be unanimous in council. Let concord be mutual between you and other servants of Christ; and do not despise others who belong to the faith and come to you for hospitality, but admit them familiarly and kindly; and when you have entertained them, speed them on their journey: by no means esteeming yourselves better than the rest of those who partake of the same faith and mode of life. Cautions against schismatics. But have no communion with cautions those who err from the unity of the Catholic faith, either by keeping Easter at an improper time, or by their perverse life. And know and remember that, if of two evils you are compelled to choose one, I would rather that you should take up my bones, and leave these places, to reside wherever God may send you, than consent in any way to the wickedness of schismatics, and so place a yoke upon your necks. Study diligently, and carefully observe the Catholic rules of the fathers, and practise with zeal those institutes of the monastic life which it has pleased God to deliver to you through my ministry. For I know that, although during my life some have despised me, yet after my death you will see what sort of man I was, and that my doctrine was by no means worthy of contempt."

§ 66. These words, and such as these, the man of God delivered to us at intervals, for, as we before said, the violence of his complaint had taken from him the power of speaking much at once. He then spent the rest of the day until the evening in the expectation of future happiness; to which he added this also, that he spent the night in watchfulness and prayer. When his hour of evening service was come, he received from me the blessed sacrament, and thus strengthened himself for his