Please forgive me for missing yesterday! Terminal writer's block!
Continued prayers for Linda, stem cell transplant for leukemia. The
first 100 days are critical. Prayers also for the health and finances
of Fr. Brendan-Benedict.
Also, today especially, pray for peace. Pray for the miracle that
Saddam will leave and war be averted. Thanks!
February 6, June 7, October 7
Chapter 7: On Humility
The ninth degree of humility
is that a monk restrain his tongue and keep silence,
not speaking until he is questioned.
For the Scripture shows
that "in much speaking there is no escape from sin" (Prov. 10:19)
and that "the talkative man is not stable on the earth" (Ps. 139:12).
One person can open their mouth with a skunk-at-a-garden-party type
remark and ruin the wonderful day a lot of others are having. One
person can change things for ill, put a damper on everything with
their uncontrolled mouth. Think of the times you have seen this
happen and weigh carefully how many of those remarks could have been
left entirely unspoken. Probably all of them could have been
Now, and hopefully there will not be much of a harvest here, think of
the times YOU have been the skunk in question. Sigh... I know I have.
I also know I have suffered skunks, and knowing how it felt makes me
twice as guilty for inflicting it on others! Beloveds, for the love
of God, we must often shut up!
Why do we open our mouths to such discourse? It can only be from
either (God forbid,) a deliberate desire to hurt or from a mistaken
notion that we are vastly closer to being the center of the universe
than others might think! Both are wicked. Humility, that intertwined
wonder, is about silence, too. Love, faith, mercy, trust, obedience,
silence! The higher we go on the ladder of humility the more we
realize how truly central to all holiness it is. Without this ascent
we are less than nothing at all!
Love and prayers,
jeromeleo@... St. Mary's Monastery Petersham, MA