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Holy Rule for July 27

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  • Jerry Lee
    +PAX Prayers, please, for Sandy, very near death from liver cancer. For her happy death and eternal rest and for all her family and friends. Prayers for Brian,
    Message 1 of 3 , Jul 27, 2005
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      +PAX

      Prayers, please, for Sandy, very near death from liver cancer. For her happy death and eternal rest and for all her family and friends. Prayers for Brian, as he mourns his beloved pet of 18 years, Shorty. Pet lovers will understand how awful such a loss can be. Prayers for Buddy, waiting to get a new apartment, and for his family, especially Joy and Dick, his parents. Prayers for Dianne and Doreen, housing troubles and a difficulty with a family member. Prayers for an Oblate whose father-in-law is pushing all her buttons badly. Patience and grace! Lord, help them 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 27, July 27, November 26
      Chapter 47: On Giving the Signal for the Time of the Work of God

      The indicating of the hour for the Work of God
      by day and by night
      shall devolve upon the Abbot
      either to give the signal himself
      or to assign this duty to such a careful brother
      that everything will take place at the proper hours.

      Let the Psalms and the antiphons be intoned
      by those who are appointed for it,
      in their order after the Abbot.
      And no one shall presume to sing or read
      unless he can fulfill that office
      in such a way as to edify the hearers.
      Let this function be performed
      with humility, gravity and reverence,
      and by him whom the Abbot has appointed.

      REFLECTION

      Our families are varied, both in monasteries and in the world. Not
      everyone has the gift of song or of reading aloud. Of those who do,
      not everyone has the gifts of love and humility and these, too, must
      be taken into account. The Solesmes Congregation is the world
      authority in Gregorian chant, but even they must live by the Holy
      Rule. I love the story of an Abbot of one their abbeys who used to
      take the choir master down a peg or two when he thought he was being
      too dominant, singing too loud, or too much of a soloist. He would
      tell the offender to sing sotto voce for a given amount of time as a
      reality check. Now there's a smart Abbot!

      In Benedictine families, those who can are forbidden to look down on
      those who cannot. Those who can are also forbidden to "star" in their
      own productions. We have a place and function for everyone and that
      place is firmly guarded by love, humility and equality. We do care
      that word and chant be proclaimed edifyingly, even nobly, but the
      minute we get sucked into the idiocy of performance or divahood of
      either gender, the whole thing is flushed. As so often, the Holy
      Rule's clear message is: "Get a life! Get real!"

      We have vocations, not careers. If any job becomes our life, it is
      time to change because, to us, any job is work, nothing more. It may
      be prayerful work, but it is just work. In and of itself, it has no
      more (or less!) relation to our monastic calling than cleaning
      toilets or taking out the garbage. The manner and attitude we give to
      any task whatsoever can either advance us on the monastic path,
      stymie us, or pull us back. A superior who knows this and assigns
      offices accordingly can be a very, very great blessing to all. One
      who does not should be envied by none.

      Father Gregory, our newest priest, has not the gift of song. He knows
      that and we know that. It has never been easy for him when his turn came
      up to be hebdomadary in choir. We wondered what would happen when
      ordination turned him, perforce, into a celebrant. We shouldn't have.

      I think some of Father's problem may be a genuine inability, one he
      could have allowed to make him throw up his hands and quit, one he
      could have let overcome him. He didn't do that. He tried and still
      tries so admirably that it truly edifies me every time he sings.

      He sings with tremendous concentration and humility, and all of us know
      that these are born of a deep love and obedience in him. I have often
      told Father that his voice pleases God more than any in our choir and
      I mean that. He has, with practice, improved a great deal, but that
      is not at all the focus: his efforts are, his determination and love
      and obedience are. Father Gregory gives the best possible example of
      how a Benedictine ought to sing. Would to God that we all had his
      grace.

      Love and prayers,
      Jerome, OSB
      http://www.stmarysmonastery.org
      jeromeleo@...
      Petersham, MA

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Br. Jerome Leo
      +PAX Prayers, please, for the spiritual, mental and physical health of the following, and for all their families: AJ addiction issues. Stephen, post-op hip
      Message 2 of 3 , Jul 26, 2007
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        +PAX

        Prayers, please, for the spiritual, mental and physical health of the following, and for all their families:

        AJ addiction issues.

        Stephen, post-op hip surgery, also cancer and alcoholism.

        Gilda, stroke.

        Madelyn, cancer.

        Michael, pains of unknown origin in his shoulder and elsewhere.

        Dot, for whom we have prayed about her mastectomy, her oncologist was surprised; he expected her cancer to be more advanced than it was, lymph involvement, etc., but it is not. Dot credits prayers and I think rightly so! Deo gratias and continued prayers, as she is on a strong drug to prevent recurrence.

        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 27, July 27, November 26
        Chapter 47: On Giving the Signal for the Time of the Work of God

        The indicating of the hour for the Work of God by day and by night
        shall devolve upon the Abbot either to give the signal himself
        or to assign this duty to such a careful brother that everything will
        take place at the proper hours. Let the Psalms and the antiphons be
        intoned by those who are appointed for it, in their order after the
        Abbot. And no one shall presume to sing or read unless he can fulfill
        that office in such a way as to edify the hearers.
        Let this function be performed with humility, gravity and reverence, and
        by him whom the Abbot has appointed.

        REFLECTION

        Our families are varied, both in monasteries and in the world. Not
        everyone has the gift of song or of reading aloud. Of those who do,
        not everyone has the gifts of love and humility and these, too, must
        be taken into account. The Solesmes Congregation is the world
        authority in Gregorian chant, but even they must live by the Holy
        Rule. I love the story of an Abbot of one their abbeys who used to
        take the choir master down a peg or two when he thought he was being too
        dominant, singing too loud, or too much of a soloist. He would tell the
        offender to sing sotto voce for a given amount of time as a reality
        check. Now there's a smart Abbot!

        In Benedictine families, those who can are forbidden to look down on
        those who cannot. Those who can are also forbidden to "star" in their
        own productions. We have a place and function for everyone and that
        place is firmly guarded by love, humility and equality. We do care that
        word and chant be proclaimed edifyingly, even nobly, but the minute we
        get sucked into the idiocy of performance or divahood of either gender,
        the whole thing is flushed. As so often, the Holy Rule's clear message
        is: "Get a life! Get real!"

        We have vocations, not careers. If any job becomes our life, it is
        time to change because, to us, any job is work, nothing more. It may be
        prayerful work, but it is just work. In and of itself, it has no more
        (or less!) relation to our monastic calling than cleaning
        toilets or taking out the garbage. The manner and attitude we give to
        any task whatsoever can either advance us on the monastic path,
        stymie us, or pull us back. A superior who knows this and assigns
        offices accordingly can be a very, very great blessing to all. One
        who does not should be envied by none.

        Father Gregory, our newest priest, has not the gift of song. He knows
        that and we know that. It has never been easy for him when his turn came
        up to be hebdomad in choir. We wondered what would happen when
        ordination turned him, perforce, into a celebrant. We shouldn't have.

        I think some of Father's problem may be a genuine inability, one he
        could have allowed to make him throw up his hands and quit, one he
        could have let overcome him. He didn't do that. He tried and still
        tries so admirably that it truly edifies me every time he sings.

        He sings with tremendous concentration and humility, and all of us know
        that these are born of a deep love and obedience in him. I have often
        told Father that his voice pleases God more than any in our choir and I
        mean that. He has, with practice, improved a great deal, but that is not
        at all the focus: his efforts are, his determination and love and
        obedience are. Father Gregory gives the best possible example of how a
        Benedictine ought to sing. Would to God that we all had his grace.

        Love and prayers,
        Jerome, OSB
        http://www.stmarysmonastery.org
        jeromeleo@...
        Petersham, MA

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