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Holy Rule for June 25

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  • Br. Jerome Leo
    +PAX Prayers, please, for Edwin, the dying man we prayed for yesterday. He has gone peacefully to God. Prayers for his happy death and eternal rest and for all
    Message 1 of 5 , Jun 24, 2007
      +PAX

      Prayers, please, for Edwin, the dying man we prayed for yesterday. He has gone peacefully to God. Prayers for his happy death and eternal rest and for all his family, especially his daughter, who was with him at his death. Prayers for Dianne, breast cancer and beginning her first round of chemotherapy.

      Mike, for whom we have prayed in the past, is in ICU with severe internal bleeding, prayers for him and all his family. Prayers for Caleb, on his 5th birthday, and for Ann, physical healing and return to work. Prayers for Kay, difficult and stressful time in her life. Prayers for two couples preparing for their weddings. 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

      February 24, June 25, October 25
      Chapter 18: In What Order the Psalms Are to Be Said

      The order of psalmody for the day Hours being thus arranged,
      let all the remaining Psalms be equally distributed
      among the seven Night Offices
      by dividing the longer Psalms among them
      and assigning twelve Psalms to each night.


      We strongly recommend, however,
      that if this distribution of the Psalms is displeasing to anyone,
      she should arrange them otherwise,
      in whatever way she considers better,
      but taking care in any case
      that the Psalter with its full number of 150 Psalms
      be chanted every week
      and begun again every Sunday at the Night Office.
      For those monastics show themselves too lazy
      in the service to which they are vowed,
      who chant less than the Psalter with the customary canticles
      in the course of a week,
      whereas we read that our holy Fathers
      strenuously fulfilled that task in a single day.
      May we, lukewarm that we are, perform it at least in a whole week!

      REFLECTION

      In his book, "The Benedictine Way", Father Wulstan Mork, OSB referred
      to this chapter. I was a bit surprised, because the chapter is often
      eclectically cited, stressing the ability to rearrange psalmody, but
      not the requirement to do all 150 in one week. Father Wulstan wrote
      that, whatever else we had done in reform of the Work of God, we had
      often failed this one-week principle entirely and he found it strange
      that something so insistent could be ignored. Given the centrality of
      the Work of God in Benedictine life and the language employed, this
      would seem to be a matter of greater import than just removing knives
      before sleep.

      I hasten to add a word of caution to Oblates here: the Holy Rule is
      referring to choral Office in monasteries. To undertake for oneself
      such an Office could well be unwise, and sometimes, even wrong. The
      conditions of one's state in life come first. Oblates who are parents
      or married have kept Vigils and Nocturns with sick children or
      spouses of which professed monastics would never dream.

      Don't get hung up on this one. Treasure the Office all you can, but tend first
      to
      the responsibilities of your state in life. Remember that your Community
      is saying the whole Office, even when you cannot, and that you are
      always a part of that Community and its prayer!

      OK, having said that, let's talk a little about monasteries and the
      Office. The old notion of monastics as professional pray-ers
      whose only mission in life was the celebration of the full liturgy is
      simply bunk. Nothing in the Holy Rule supports that extreme view. On
      the other hand, many things do support the idea of a task, a service,
      even, to some extent, a burden of the Office that monasteries assume.

      Put another way, balance, as always, is put forward here. The Office
      should be neither too hard nor too easy. It ought to chafe a bit, but
      not overwhelm, just like the Rule's injunction that both the weak and
      the strong may have something to strive for and be not discouraged.
      If we make the Office TOO easy, it becomes merely a dash of
      devotional side-dressing to a busy, but otherwise only faintly pious
      life.

      The busyness of modern life is nothing compared to the amount of
      labor required to maintain life in the first centuries of the Order's
      existence. Neither were there lay brothers to do all that work in
      those days, since they were a much later development. No electricity,
      no indoor plumbing, no running water, no phones, no cars. In the
      midst of a life that we would find crushingly different, St. Benedict
      insisted on the weekly 150. Hmmmm......

      We live in a world where countless labor-saving devices and perks
      give us far more time than anyone in history has ever had. Are we
      always good stewards of that largesse? Heaven knows, I don't want to
      give up those modern advantages, look at how hooked on computers I
      am. But what do we do with all that time?

      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 the many immigrant families in the US affected by the recent Supreme Court decision. Prayers for the UK, after their vote to withdraw from the
      Message 2 of 5 , Jun 24, 2016
        +PAX



        Prayers for the many immigrant families in the US affected by the recent
        Supreme Court decision.



        Prayers for the UK, after their vote to withdraw from the EU, for peace on
        all sides and the well-being of all.



        Huge Deo gratias, Fr. Dunstan is at last back in Petersham. Prayers for him
        as he settles in again after so many trials at home with his parents' deaths
        and other family matters.



        Prayers for the happy death of Olga, in hospice for cancer and having
        complications, and for her son, Michael, and all her family and all who will
        mourn her.



        Prayers for newly elected Abbot President of the American Cassinese
        Congregation, Fr. Elias Lorenzo, OSB, Prior of Sant' Anselmo in Rome. May
        God grant him many graces to serve in his new ministry.



        Belated feastday prayers for St. John's Abbey, Collegeville, Minnesota, and
        all their monks and Oblates, their patronal feast was June 24. Graces and
        blessings for all!



        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

        February 24, June 25, October 25
        Chapter 18: In What Order the Psalms Are to Be Said

        The order of psalmody for the day Hours being thus arranged,
        let all the remaining Psalms be equally distributed
        among the seven Night Offices
        by dividing the longer Psalms among them
        and assigning twelve Psalms to each night.


        We strongly recommend, however,
        that if this distribution of the Psalms is displeasing to anyone,
        she should arrange them otherwise,
        in whatever way she considers better,
        but taking care in any case
        that the Psalter with its full number of 150 Psalms
        be chanted every week
        and begun again every Sunday at the Night Office.
        For those monastics show themselves too lazy
        in the service to which they are vowed,
        who chant less than the Psalter with the customary canticles
        in the course of a week,
        whereas we read that our holy Fathers
        strenuously fulfilled that task in a single day.
        May we, lukewarm that we are, perform it at least in a whole week!

        REFLECTION

        In his book, "The Benedictine Way", Father Wulstan Mork, OSB referred
        to this chapter. I was a bit surprised, because the chapter is often
        eclectically cited, stressing the ability to rearrange psalmody, but
        not the requirement to do all 150 in one week. Father Wulstan wrote
        that, whatever else we had done in reform of the Work of God, we had
        often failed this one-week principle entirely and he found it strange
        that something so insistent could be ignored. Given the centrality of
        the Work of God in Benedictine life and the language employed, this
        would seem to be a matter of greater import than just removing knives
        before sleep.

        I hasten to add a word of caution to Oblates here: the Holy Rule is
        referring to choral Office in monasteries. To undertake for oneself
        such an Office could well be unwise. The
        conditions of one's state in life come first. Oblates who are parents
        or married have kept Vigils and Nocturns with sick children or
        spouses of which professed monastics would never dream.

        Don't get hung up on this one. Treasure the Office all you can, but tend
        first
        to the responsibilities of your state in life. Remember that your Community
        is saying the whole Office, even when you cannot, and that you are
        always a part of that Community and its prayer!

        OK, having said that, let's talk a little about monasteries and the
        Office. In the Holy Rule, many things do support the idea of a task, a
        service,
        even, to some extent, a burden of the Office that monasteries assume.

        Put another way, balance, as always, is put forward here. The Office
        should be neither too hard nor too easy. It ought to chafe a bit, but
        not overwhelm, just like the Rule's injunction that both the weak and
        the strong may have something to strive for and be not discouraged.
        If we make the Office TOO easy, it becomes merely a dash of
        devotional side-dressing to a busy, but otherwise only faintly pious
        life.

        The busyness of modern life is nothing compared to the amount of
        labor required to maintain life in the first centuries of the Order's
        existence. Nor were there lay brothers to do all that work in
        those days, since they were a much later development. No electricity,
        no indoor plumbing, no running water, no phones, no cars. In the
        midst of a life that we would find crushingly different, St. Benedict
        insisted on the weekly 150. Hmmmm......

        We live in a world where countless labor-saving devices and perks
        give us far more time than anyone in history has ever had. Are we
        always good stewards of that largesse? Heaven knows, I don't want to
        give up those modern advantages, look at how hooked on computers I
        am. But what do we do with all that time?

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













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