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4132Holy Rule for Mar. 13

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  • Br. Jerome Leo
    Mar 12, 2013

      Prayers, please, for the eternal rest of the following, for all their families and all who mourn them:

      Ricarda, 101, and esp. for Evelyn, her granddaughter

      Bill's wife's brother, who sadly took his own life, and for Bill's wife and family.

      Prayers for the following and all their families and all who take care of them:

      Bill's Father, brain bleed, stable now, but they don't know what caused it.

      Larry, new treatment for very chronic depresssion.

      Michael, congestive heart failure and swollen legs

      Lord, help us all as You know and will. God's will is best. All is
      mercy and grace. God is never absent, praise Him! Thanks so much. JL

      March 13, July 13, November 12
      Chapter 35: On the Weekly Servers in the Kitchen

      Let the brethren serve one another, and let no one be excused from
      the kitchen service
      except by reason of sickness or occupation in some important work.
      For this service brings increase of reward and of charity. But let
      helpers be provided for the weak ones, that they may not be
      distressed by this work; and indeed let everyone have help, as
      required by the size of the community or the circumstances of the
      locality. If the community is a large one,
      the cellarer shall be excused from the kitchen service; and so also
      those whose occupations are of greater utility, as we said above.
      Let the rest serve one another in charity.

      The one who is ending his week of service shall do the cleaning on
      Saturday. He shall wash the towels with which the brethren wipe
      their hands and feet; and this server who is ending his week, aided
      by the one who is about to begin, shall wash the feet of all the
      brethren. He shall return the utensils of his office to the
      cellarer clean and in good condition,
      and the cellarer in turn shall consign them to the incoming server,
      in order that he may know what he gives out and what he receives


      I know some houses have moved away from having table waiters, but
      something is lost in that. We have cafeteria style first portions
      here, then the waiter goes around to offer seconds and clears the
      dishes. It isn't a really big deal, but it does have a great reward,
      as the Holy Rule points out. Because we are a small community, only
      7, everyone, even the Superior takes a turn at waiting.

      Formerly, in some houses (maybe in all, but I am not sure,) the
      Abbot would wait tables on Holy Thursday. There was a nice
      connection there: he who held the place of Christ waited on all on
      the feast of the Last Supper, and washed the feet of twelve in
      Church that day.

      The connection here is personalist. Waiting on people connects you
      very much to them, as any waiter could tell you. Restaurants may
      not pursue that connection to any depth, but a home situation, like
      a monastery, surely does.

      There's a great notion here for Oblates
      who do not live alone: take turns waiting. We can get slumped into Dad
      or Mom or husband or wife always being waiter or waited upon.
      Switch off, care for each other, in this and many, many other ways!

      There are tons of ways of serving another, serving each other, that
      have nothing at all to do with tables or dining. There are many,
      many, equivalent forms of foot-washing. Hunt for them diligently and
      practice them with deep love!

      Love and prayers,

      Jerome, OSB

      Petersham, MA

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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