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Holy Rule for Sept. 17

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  • Jerry Lee
    +PAX Clare, for whom we prayed, is having complications after her pacemaker surgery and may require further surgery. Prayers for her, her son, Rob and all her
    Message 1 of 5 , Sep 17 5:48 AM
      +PAX

      Clare, for whom we prayed, is having complications after her pacemaker surgery and may require further surgery. Prayers for her, her son, Rob and all her family. Prayers for the happy death and eternal rest of Sisters Rose Elizabeth and Michael Denis, who have gone to God. Prayers, too, for Mary M., rejoicing at selling her first article for publication. Deo gratias and many more! 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

      Chapter 3: On Calling the Brethren for Counsel
      Jan. 17 May 18 Sept. 17

      In all things, therefore, let all follow the Rule as guide,
      and let no one be so rash as to deviate from it.
      Let no one in the monastery follow his own heart's fancy;
      and let no one presume to contend with his Abbot
      in an insolent way or even outside of the monastery.
      But if anyone should presume to do so,
      let him undergo the discipline of the Rule.
      At the same time,
      the Abbot himself should do all things in the fear of God
      and in observance of the Rule,
      knowing that beyond a doubt
      he will have to render an account of all his decisions
      to God, the most just Judge.

      But if the business to be done in the interests of the monastery
      be of lesser importance,
      let him take counsel with the seniors only.
      It is written,
      "Do everything with counsel,
      and you will not repent when you have done it" (Eccles. 32:24).

      REFLECTION

      The key here is not to contend insolently; there is no proscription
      against telling the Abbot one feels something is amiss, so long as it
      is done respectfully and humbly. We are Benedictines, not fascists;
      we have a Father, not a Fuhrer.

      A pithy quote from Jesuit liturgical scholar Father Robert Taft, who
      was speaking about Church authority in general, but it certainly
      applies to us: "I don't buy ecclesiastical fascism, I think
      authoritarianism is the refuge of the stupid. It saves you from the
      obligation of thought."

      Human nature being what it is, people are usually more prone to cite
      the Abbot's responsibility to seek counsel than they are to cite the
      equally important proscription against contending with one's Abbot!
      There's a cure for that and many other ills buried within this
      chapter, a telling phrase whose observance promises peace. That
      little gem urges the monastics not to follow their "own heart's
      fancy."

      Follow that gem and peace abounds! For one thing, whether abbot or
      monastic, parent or child, boss or employee, the focus of the
      relationship ceases to become self. None of us are anywheres near the
      big deal we'd either like to be or think ourselves to be! Much of
      what seems earth-shattering to us is really small stuff, indeed.

      This is so important to monastic struggle because it is so intricately
      interwoven with detachment and holy indifference. We must learn how
      to hold onto our inner peace, how to safeguard it from damage at the
      hands of trivia. An abject TERRIBLE day for us, one when we are so
      hurt or angry that no one dares approach us is just another average
      day for the rest of the community. Until, of course we decide we ARE
      the center of the universe and ruin it for them... Cling to that
      knowledge of trivia and less will suffer!

      At that point of recognizing trivia, truth and therefore, humility
      and divinity itself, enter into the equation. We need very good "crap
      detectors" and their default setting must be aimed at ourselves,
      rarely cast elsewhere except in cases of really great need. We can
      keep those crap detectors more than amply busy just in our own hearts
      and wills! We need to know deception, falsity, trivia, but it is
      essential to know them first in ourselves.

      If these good tools of detection are aimed only at others, the result
      will be pride and a fall, not humility and truth. Jesus said "I am
      the Truth," and to Him we must prefer nothing. Hence, our first
      desire must always be the truth and the truth is that the earth does
      not revolve around us as an axis!

      Our age, particularly, has embraced the pap of "Follow your bliss!"
      Well, maybe...sometimes.... but maybe not, too. Our "bliss" is no
      guarantee of infallibility. Years ago, and for many years of my life,
      I thought my "bliss" would be to be married to an attorney and having
      drinks by the pool. No doubt there may be some who wish I had
      followed that one, but how different my life would have been had I
      done so!

      As a handy rule of thumb, I would say that the will of God quite
      often looks nothing like bliss at first. Hence, confusing bliss with
      the divine will can be very risky. The will of God often BECOMES
      bliss when we are in the midst of following it, but we frequently
      have to be dragged, kicking and screaming, into that compliance! And
      sometimes our bliss IS the right thing- even a stopped clock is right
      twice a day- but those sometimes are impossible to predict. And, let
      us be frank, few people carry stopped watches because of their
      usefulness twice a day!

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

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Brjeromeleo@aol.com
      +PAX All prayer requests, please, with Prayer in the subject line to: _brjeromeleo@aol.com_ (mailto:brjeromeleo@aol.com) Prayers for one struggling to accept
      Message 2 of 5 , Sep 16 5:53 PM
        +PAX

        All prayer requests, please, with Prayer in the subject line to:
        _brjeromeleo@..._ (mailto:brjeromeleo@...)

        Prayers for one struggling to accept the limitations of a neurological
        disorder, for serenity in God's perfect will. Prayers for one wondering about a
        Carmelite vocation, also for one seeking discernment of God's will in the light
        of family obligations. Prayers for one betrayed by her husband and going
        through a painful divorce. Prayers for another couple, just divorced, and for
        their daughter. Prayers for Yossi, one of our readers, who will enter his
        postulancy at Holy Cross Monastery in Chicago on Sept. 29. Deo gratias! And may
        every grace of perseverance be his and nothing but the perfect will of God!
        Prayers for John, a teenager hospitalized after two grand mal seizures, cause
        unknown, and for Elaine and Dave, his very worried parents. Elaine has some
        serious medical problems of her own, so special prayers for her. Prayers for
        Brenna that, if God wills, she may get the job she hopes for near her own home,
        that God will show her what He wants her to do next and that she will follow
        Him with deep trust. 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

        Chapter 3: On Calling the Brethren for Counsel
        Jan. 17 May 18 Sept. 17

        In all things, therefore, let all follow the Rule as guide,
        and let no one be so rash as to deviate from it.
        Let no one in the monastery follow his own heart's fancy;
        and let no one presume to contend with his Abbot
        in an insolent way or even outside of the monastery.
        But if anyone should presume to do so,
        let him undergo the discipline of the Rule.
        At the same time,
        the Abbot himself should do all things in the fear of God
        and in observance of the Rule,
        knowing that beyond a doubt
        he will have to render an account of all his decisions
        to God, the most just Judge.

        But if the business to be done in the interests of the monastery
        be of lesser importance,
        let him take counsel with the seniors only.
        It is written,
        "Do everything with counsel,
        and you will not repent when you have done it" (Eccles. 32:24).

        REFLECTION

        The key here is not to contend insolently; there is no proscription
        against telling the Abbot one feels something is amiss, so long as it
        is done respectfully and humbly. We are Benedictines, not fascists;
        we have a Father, not a Fuhrer.

        A pithy quote from Jesuit liturgical scholar Father Robert Taft, who
        was speaking about Church authority in general, but it certainly
        applies to us: "I don't buy ecclesiastical fascism, I think
        authoritarianism is the refuge of the stupid. It saves you from the
        obligation of thought."

        Human nature being what it is, people are usually more prone to cite
        the Abbot's responsibility to seek counsel than they are to cite the
        equally important proscription against contending with one's Abbot!
        There's a cure for that and many other ills buried within this
        chapter, a telling phrase whose observance promises peace. That
        little gem urges the monastics not to follow their "own heart's
        fancy."

        Follow that gem and peace abounds! For one thing, whether abbot or
        monastic, parent or child, boss or employee, the focus of the
        relationship ceases to become self. None of us are anywheres near the
        big deal we'd either like to be or think ourselves to be! Much of
        what seems earth-shattering to us is really small stuff, indeed.

        This is so important to monastic struggle because it is so intricately
        interwoven with detachment and holy indifference. We must learn how
        to hold onto our inner peace, how to safeguard it from damage at the
        hands of trivia. An abject TERRIBLE day for us, one when we are so
        hurt or angry that no one dares approach us is just another average
        day for the rest of the community. Until, of course we decide we ARE
        the center of the universe and ruin it for them... Cling to that
        knowledge of trivia and less will suffer!

        At that point of recognizing trivia, truth and therefore, humility
        and divinity itself, enter the equation. We need very good "crap
        detectors" and their default setting must be aimed at ourselves,
        rarely cast elsewhere except in cases of really great need. We can
        keep those crap detectors more than amply busy just in our own hearts
        and wills! We need to know deception, falsity, trivia, but it is
        essential to know them first in ourselves.

        If these good tools of detection are aimed only at others, the result
        will be pride and a fall, not humility and truth. Jesus said "I am
        the Truth," and to Him we must prefer nothing. Hence, our first
        desire must always be the truth and the truth is that the earth does
        not revolve around us as an axis!

        Our age, particularly, has embraced the pap of "Follow your bliss!"
        Well, maybe...sometimes.... but maybe not, too. Our "bliss" is no
        guarantee of infallibility. Years ago, and for many years of my life,
        I thought my "bliss" would be to be married to an attorney and having
        drinks by the pool. No doubt there may be some who wish I had
        followed that one, but how different my life would have been had I
        done so!

        As a handy rule of thumb, I would say that the will of God quite
        often looks nothing like bliss at first. Hence, confusing bliss with
        the divine will can be very risky. The will of God often BECOMES
        bliss when we are in the midst of following it, but we frequently
        have to be dragged, kicking and screaming, into that compliance! And
        sometimes our bliss IS the right thing- even a stopped clock is right
        twice a day- but those sometimes are impossible to predict. And, let
        us be frank, few people carry stopped watches because of their
        usefulness twice a day!

        Love and prayers,
        Jerome, OSB
        _http://www.stmarysmonastery.org_ (http://www.stmarysmonastery.org/)
        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, for all their loved ones and for all who treat or care for them: Guy,
        Message 3 of 5 , Sep 16 3:17 PM
          +PAX

          Prayers, please, for the spiritual, mental and physical health of the following, for all their loved ones and for all who treat or care for them:

          Guy, elderly, depressive, having had to be moved twice in recent months, now off meds until a new regime can be started.

          Albert, stressed to the maximum and physically ill from it.

          A man in renal failure, also diabetic. Lord, help us 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

          Chapter 3: On Calling the Brethren for Counsel
          Jan. 17 May 18 Sept. 17

          In all things, therefore, let all follow the Rule as guide,
          and let no one be so rash as to deviate from it.
          Let no one in the monastery follow his own heart's fancy;
          and let no one presume to contend with his Abbot
          in an insolent way or even outside of the monastery.
          But if anyone should presume to do so,
          let him undergo the discipline of the Rule.
          At the same time,
          the Abbot himself should do all things in the fear of God
          and in observance of the Rule,
          knowing that beyond a doubt
          he will have to render an account of all his decisions
          to God, the most just Judge.

          But if the business to be done in the interests of the monastery
          be of lesser importance,
          let him take counsel with the seniors only.
          It is written,
          "Do everything with counsel,
          and you will not repent when you have done it" (Eccles. 32:24).

          REFLECTION

          The key here is not to contend insolently; there is no proscription
          against telling the Abbot one feels something is amiss, so long as it
          is done respectfully and humbly. We are Benedictines, not fascists;
          we have a Father, not a Fuhrer.

          A pithy quote from Jesuit liturgical scholar Father Robert Taft, who
          was speaking about Church authority in general, but it certainly
          applies to us: "I don't buy ecclesiastical fascism, I think
          authoritarianism is the refuge of the stupid. It saves you from the
          obligation of thought."

          Human nature being what it is, people are usually more prone to cite
          the Abbot's responsibility to seek counsel than they are to cite the
          equally important proscription against contending with one's Abbot!
          There's a cure for that and many other ills buried within this
          chapter, a telling phrase whose observance promises peace. That
          little gem urges the monastics not to follow their "own heart's
          fancy."

          Follow that gem and peace abounds! For one thing, whether abbot or
          monastic, parent or child, boss or employee, the focus of the
          relationship ceases to become self. None of us are anywheres near the
          big deal we'd either like to be or think ourselves to be! Much of
          what seems earth-shattering to us is really small stuff, indeed.

          This is so important to monastic struggle because it is so intricately
          interwoven with detachment and holy indifference. We must learn how
          to hold onto our inner peace, how to safeguard it from damage at the
          hands of trivia. An abject TERRIBLE day for us, one when we are so
          hurt or angry that no one dares approach us is just another average
          day for the rest of the community. Until, of course we decide we ARE
          the center of the universe and ruin it for them... Cling to that
          knowledge of trivia and less will suffer!

          At that point of recognizing trivia, truth and therefore, humility
          and divinity itself, enter the equation. We need very good "crap
          detectors" and their default setting must be aimed at ourselves,
          rarely cast elsewhere except in cases of really great need. We can
          keep those crap detectors more than amply busy just in our own hearts
          and wills! We need to know deception, falsity, trivia, but it is
          essential to know them first in ourselves.

          If these good tools of detection are aimed only at others, the result
          will be pride and a fall, not humility and truth. Jesus said "I am
          the Truth," and to Him we must prefer nothing. Hence, our first
          desire must always be the truth and the truth is that the earth does
          not revolve around us as an axis!

          Our age, particularly, has embraced the pap of "Follow your bliss!"
          Well, maybe...sometimes.... but maybe not, too. Our "bliss" is no
          guarantee of infallibility. Years ago, and for many years of my life,
          I thought my "bliss" would be to be married to an attorney and having
          drinks by the pool. No doubt there may be some who wish I had
          followed that one, but how different my life would have been had I
          done so!

          As a handy rule of thumb, I would say that the will of God quite
          often looks nothing like bliss at first. Hence, confusing bliss with
          the divine will can be very risky. The will of God often BECOMES
          bliss when we are in the midst of following it, but we frequently
          have to be dragged, kicking and screaming, into that compliance! And
          sometimes our bliss IS the right thing- even a stopped clock is right
          twice a day- but those sometimes are impossible to predict. And, let
          us be frank, few people carry stopped watches because of their
          usefulness twice a day!

          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 for a diabetic man who is having emergency heart surgery, possibly a triple bypass. Prayers, too, for his surgical team, and his worried family.
          Message 4 of 5 , Sep 16 3:03 PM

            +PAX

             

            Prayers for a diabetic man who is having emergency heart surgery, possibly a triple bypass. Prayers, too, for his surgical team, and his worried family. His father died of this same condition and they are very concerned.

             

            Prayers for Nick, a Prodigal Son type, and for his Mom.

             

            Sad news: Alas, the young woman we prayed for, who was being pressured by her father to abort her baby, has yielded to the pressure and had the abortion. Prayers for her repentance and for the repentance of all involved. Special prayers that God, in His Mercy, has taken the baby to Himself. Prayers for all tempted to abortion, that they save their babies.

             

            Prayers for Vincent, a theological student in Africa, that God leads him in His will.

             

            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

            January 18, May 19, September 18
            Chapter 4: What Are the Instruments of Good Works

            In the first place, to love the Lord God with the whole heart, the
            whole soul, the whole strength.
            Then, one's neighbor as oneself.
            Then not to murder.
            Not to commit adultery.
            Not to steal.
            Not to covet.
            Not to bear false witness.
            To honor all (1 Peter 2:17).
            And not to do to another what one would not have done to oneself.
            To deny oneself in order to follow Christ.
            To chastise the body.
            Not to become attached to pleasures.
            To love fasting.
            To relieve the poor.
            To clothe the naked.
            To visit the sick.
            To bury the dead.
            To help in trouble.
            To console the sorrowing.
            To become a stranger to the world's ways.
            To prefer nothing to the love of Christ.

            REFLECTION

            The Commandments are here, but so are some of the works of mercy,
            both spiritual and corporal: clothing the naked, relieving the poor,
            visiting the sick, burying the dead, helping in trouble and consoling
            the sorrowing. It is no accident that the works undertaken by
            monasteries were most often those involving spiritual or corporal
            works of mercy.

            Mercy is God's greatest attribute. Its links with love make it an
            attribute we can easily follow in our dealings with others,
            conforming ourselves more and more to the image of Christ. When the
            Father looks at us, He delights to see the image of His Son brought
            to life in us. Nothing can bring that image into sharper focus than
            works of mercy every day, continually throughout our lives.

            Many works of mercy can be given freely, but never forget that some
            do works of mercy for a living. I used to think nursing didn't count
            because I got paid for it. Then one day, it dawned on me that there
            were plenty of people you couldn't PAY to nurse someone! No, the
            teacher, the gravedigger, the nurse and anyone else who does such
            works of mercy as an occupation are still graced!

            The works of mercy can be words, deeds, or prayers. They seek to
            alleviate pain or prevent it. Remember those spiritual works of
            mercy, like counseling the doubtful or enlightening the ignorant,
            praying for the living and dead. You don't have to run an almonry or
            work in one to do works of mercy.

            The chances are everywhere and often no more dramatic than
            offering to get a swamped co-worker a cup of coffee. They are often just
            such little things, but that makes them easier to hide and do without fanfare.
            They are little things of love and therein lies their greatness and their
            Christ-like splendor! Courtesy, simple courtesy is extraordinary in
            our world today because it is so often neglected. The chances there
            for a word of mercy or a kind gesture are abundant. Anyone who drives
            a car has ample chances for such mercy on every trip!

            Never let a day go by without doing works of mercy. Never. If you are
            already in bed and examining your conscience when you realize you
            have missed a day, there is still time to pray for the dying, to pray
            for the living and dead. We have no excuse for missing a day and
            there is so much good at stake, good placed near our own hands. Don't
            miss that wonderful chance! An don't be surprised to find that works
            of mercy change YOU as much as they do others. Little by little we
            become more of Christ!

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

             



             

          • russophile2002
            +PAX Prayers for the health of Ann, several hospitalizations and the cause of her bleeding still has not been found. Prayers she can be successfully treated.
            Message 5 of 5 , Sep 16 2:34 PM

              +PAX

               

              Prayers for the health of Ann, several hospitalizations and the cause of her bleeding still has not been found. Prayers she can be successfully treated.

               

              Prayers for the health of Richard, first a cardiac stent, then rushed back for open heart surgery.

               

              Deo gratias and prayers of thanks to God and the Blessed Mother for someone’s daughter who was protected from a sex trafficker who was stalking her.

               

              Healing prayers for Michael, 23, diagnosed with an aggressive lymphoma and going into a clinical trial. Prayers, too, for his Mom, 2 brothers and his aunt, and all their family.

               

              Prayers for all those still without power since the hurricane.

               

              Prayers for children on a vocation retreat in the Philippines.

               

              Healing prayers for C., for a fast recovery.

               

              Prayers for the health of M.

               

              Please pray for the eternal repose of Oblate Rose, 70. Prayers, too, for her husband of 50 Years, Deacon Joseph, and for all who mourn her.

               

              Prayers for Luis, for whom we prayed, he had to have his leg amputated after all. Prayers he heals quickly, both emotionally and physically. May he accept God’s will for him.

               

              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

              January 18, May 19, September 18
              Chapter 4: What Are the Instruments of Good Works

              In the first place, to love the Lord God with the whole heart, the
              whole soul, the whole strength.
              Then, one's neighbor as oneself.
              Then not to murder.
              Not to commit adultery.
              Not to steal.
              Not to covet.
              Not to bear false witness.
              To honor all (1 Peter 2:17).
              And not to do to another what one would not have done to oneself.
              To deny oneself in order to follow Christ.
              To chastise the body.
              Not to become attached to pleasures.
              To love fasting.
              To relieve the poor.
              To clothe the naked.
              To visit the sick.
              To bury the dead.
              To help in trouble.
              To console the sorrowing.
              To become a stranger to the world's ways.
              To prefer nothing to the love of Christ.

              REFLECTION

              The Commandments are here, but so are some of the works of mercy,
              both spiritual and corporal: clothing the naked, relieving the poor,
              visiting the sick, burying the dead, helping in trouble and consoling
              the sorrowing. It is no accident that the works undertaken by
              monasteries were most often those involving spiritual or corporal
              works of mercy.

              Mercy is God's greatest attribute. Its links with love make it an
              attribute we can easily follow in our dealings with others,
              conforming ourselves more and more to the image of Christ. When the
              Father looks at us, He delights to see the image of His Son brought
              to life in us. Nothing can bring that image into sharper focus than
              works of mercy every day, continually throughout our lives.

              Many works of mercy can be given freely, but never forget that some
              do works of mercy for a living. I used to think nursing didn't count
              because I got paid for it. Then one day, it dawned on me that there
              were plenty of people you couldn't PAY to nurse someone! No, the
              teacher, the gravedigger, the nurse and anyone else who does such
              works of mercy as an occupation are still graced!

              The works of mercy can be words, deeds, or prayers. They seek to
              alleviate pain or prevent it. Remember those spiritual works of
              mercy, like counseling the doubtful or enlightening the ignorant,
              praying for the living and dead. You don't have to run an almonry or
              work in one to do works of mercy.

              The chances are everywhere and often no more dramatic than
              offering to get a swamped co-worker a cup of coffee. They are often just
              such little things, but that makes them easier to hide and do without fanfare.
              They are little things of love and therein lies their greatness and their
              Christ-like splendor! Courtesy, simple courtesy is extraordinary in
              our world today because it is so often neglected. The chances there
              for a word of mercy or a kind gesture are abundant. Anyone who drives
              a car has ample chances for such mercy on every trip!

              Never let a day go by without doing works of mercy. Never. If you are
              already in bed and examining your conscience when you realize you
              have missed a day, there is still time to pray for the dying, to pray
              for the living and dead. We have no excuse for missing a day and
              there is so much good at stake, good placed near our own hands. Don't
              miss that wonderful chance! An don't be surprised to find that works
              of mercy change YOU as much as they do others. Little by little we
              become more of Christ!

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

               

               


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