Letter 3.26 to Presbyter Magnus of Milan (March 593)
Gregory to Magnus, presbyter from the church of Milan
Just as someone is rightly driven from the sacrament of the communion when a sin demands it, even so, in no way should such a punishment be required for the innocent. For indeed we have discovered that Laurentius, once our brother and fellow-bishop, deprived you of communion with no sign of any sin. And so, defended by the authority of this command of ours, carry out your duty without worry, and take communion without any fear.
Furthermore, we have decided that you should necessarily be encouraged to show yourself so pure and dilligent in all services to your church, that no offence over neglect might point at you, and so that, with purity of your faith, you might wipe away any fault found in you, even if hidden, for which you had been deprived of the communion of our Lord's body and blood. So warn the clerics and people not to disagree at all in their election of a bishop, but with total consensus let them elect for themselves such a bishop for consecration whose acts are praiseworthy, and whose character may be welcome to God and to men, in case, if it were done differently, with divided loyalties (Heaven forbid!), a loss might result for Church income.
(trans. Martyn 2004: 252, slightly altered by J. Szafranowski)