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Holy Rule for Oct. 4

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  • Br. Jerome Leo
    +PAX Prayers of thanks and Deo gratias for: Brie, on her 26th birthday. Ad multos annos, many years and many graces! Fr. Brendan and Bp. Basil, who have found
    Message 1 of 6 , Oct 3, 2007
      +PAX

      Prayers of thanks and Deo gratias for:

      Brie, on her 26th birthday. Ad multos annos, many years and many graces!

      Fr. Brendan and Bp. Basil, who have found a way to get to their retreat.

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

      Mary, who died yesterday.

      Russ, who died on Tuesday.

      The aunt and mother of Maggie, the young mother who took her own life, also both died from suicide some time ago, bit it is never to late to pray for their happy death.

      Prayers for the spiritual, mental and physical health of the following, for all who love them and for all who treat or care for them:

      Ann, two serious accidents in 3 days, now has two broken legs, a broken neck and is comatose. She may not live, her prognosis is uncertain.

      Glenn, diagnosed with spots on his brain, seeing neurosurgeon this week, and for Verna, his Mom, whose motor home blew up on top of all her other worries. Fortunately no one was in it, Deo gratias.

      Haley, surgery to remove a blood clot in her leg after a car wreck, and especially for her brother, Br. Gabriel.

      Corrine, who went to the police about her abusive husband, for safety and courage, and for their 6 year old daughter, Caroline, also for the conversion and repentance of the husband.

      Kim, desperately needing a friend, and for her estranged daughter, Janet, heavily in debt and other troubles, badly needing conversion, and for her friend, Mary.

      A young man, 42, whose life support has been discontinued, his family is praying for a miracle.

      A young couple with two children, serious marital problems linked to the wife's long-standing emotional problems, husband fearing he may have to leave. 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 3, June 4, October 4
      Chapter 7: On Humility

      The sixth degree of humility
      is that a monk be content
      with the poorest and worst of everything,
      and that in every occupation assigned him
      he consider himself a bad and worthless workman,
      saying with the Prophet,
      "I am brought to nothing and I am without understanding;
      I have become as a beast of burden before You,
      and I am always with You" (Ps:22-23).

      REFLECTION

      It is easy to miss the hardest word in this reading. Our eyes fly
      right away to the ones we want to argue with- and these days many
      want to argue with them! Slyly stuck into the first line is the
      demand that the monastic "be CONTENT with the poorest and worst of
      everything." The connection this time is not to obedience, but to
      other virtues in humility's service: simplicity and stability.

      Contentedness does not bide its time for a jump to something better,
      does not merely undergo, but accepts rather matter-of-factly.
      Contented monastics aren't hunting for or wondering about something
      else, usually it doesn't even occur to them. Truly contented people,
      in monasteries or in marriage or in the world do not spend a lot of
      time on "what if?" or "what next?". In the 70's a lot of people loved
      the popular phrase on posters: "Bloom where you are planted." Quite
      possibly they never stopped to think exactly what that meant: being
      contented enough to blossom in any circumstance. Whoops! A little
      more teeth to that version!

      I know from personal experience: stability with divided attention,
      with tons of Plans B, C, and D, simply is not very effective. It is
      better than nothing, to be sure, but it is nearly nothing when
      compared with its power once all those distractions are dropped. We
      often cannot drop them all at once, but we must try to stay rooted,
      ever more and more rooted.

      I know one great monk who told me, at 83, that
      he had finally decided to stay! There was not even a hint of irony of
      twinkle in his voice. On the other hand, I have known monks who were
      happy as clams and completely contented in their forties. It is a
      different struggle for each of us.

      Truly contented simplicity and stability are powerful, counter-
      cultural witnesses to offer this age. Materialism, consumerism and
      the short attention span rule. A consumerist society is actually
      fueled by provoking discontent: how else can superfluous consumption
      imposed?

      Every time one person, family or monastery gets even
      partially free of those constraints it is a powerful witness to those
      still bound. Most of us truly do not "need" more. The Holy Rule can
      teach us that, but not if we look at it through the lenses we have
      hauled along with us from the 21st century world. Those lenses are
      completely invested in our reaching the opposite- and false-
      conclusion.

      Two cautions here. Good ole Gulf coast Florida boy that I am, I can
      tell you that when one goes crabbing with a big floating washtub full
      of blue crabs tied to your belt, you never have to put a lid on it.
      Why? Because whenever one crab gets close to crawling out, the others
      will pull it down. Don't be surprised if this happens to you!
      Lots of people LOVE consumerist enslavement, or at least think they do!

      The other, equally important consideration is that simplicity is NOT just
      a way to save money- though it will free up plenty. The goal is not
      to hoard what you have saved, but to spread it around or, as St.
      Elizabeth Seton said: "Let us live simply, so that others may simply
      live."

      As to the "bad and worthless workman" line, where I expect there'll
      be a lot of dissent, well, that isn't St. Benedict or me. You'll have
      to argue with Jesus Himself on that one. He said that after we have
      done ALL that was commanded us, we should say we are nothing but
      unprofitable servants. Being God, I don't imagine He was mistaken.

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





      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Br. Jerome Leo
      +PAX Prayers for all who bear the name of St.Francis, on their patronal feast, and for all Franciscans. Graces galore and many more, ad multos annos! Special
      Message 2 of 6 , Oct 3, 2016

        +PAX

         

        Prayers for all who bear the name of St.Francis, on their patronal feast, and for all Franciscans. Graces galore and many more, ad multos annos! Special prayers for the former Eric Knott, who became Br. Francis on Oct. 3rd. This is his first feastday with his new name! Special prayers, too, for the Allegany Franciscan Sisters who touched my life in my Florida years. Prayers for Abbot Francis of Prinknash Abbey and for the eternal rest of Abbot Francis of St. Leo Abbey.

         

        Prayers for Sr. Connie Ruth, OSB, having surgery on Wednesday, for a successful operation and a speedy, complete recovery.

         

        Continued prayers for Tom, ALS/Lou Gehrig’s disease, he also has two daughters I forgot to add to the list, prayers for them and all his family.

         

        Please pray for Patrick, who is suspected of being involved in the death of his long time girl friend. Amy, after finding her dead. He is in shock, to say the least. Please lift him up in prayer for protection and for his own safety and state of mind. Prayers, too, for both families, please.


        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 3, June 4, October 4
        Chapter 7: On Humility

        The sixth degree of humility
        is that a monk be content
        with the poorest and worst of everything,
        and that in every occupation assigned him
        he consider himself a bad and worthless workman,
        saying with the Prophet,
        "I am brought to nothing and I am without understanding;
        I have become as a beast of burden before You,
        and I am always with You" (Ps:22-23).

        REFLECTION

        While it may be true that some people have self-esteems
        which are far too low, I think that many people, from my generation onward,
        have "worked through all that" with more than enough success. Relax,
        I think that often we have compensated for any imbalance and then some! With
        ears attuned to such 21st century self-affirmation, it is hard for us to hear
        lines like "worthless workman", "brought to nothing" and "a beast of
        burden before You."

        Understandably, we may listen through our filtered ears and wonder
        how on earth the Psalmist could say such things. Mechanisms to
        explain them away and denial defenses spring right up: " Must have
        been his primitive society, must have been some neurotic notion of
        religion in those days! Boy, that David REALLY needed to work on his
        self-image, so sad in a King, too!"

        I don't think any of those things are true in more than the most
        minimal sense, if that. David COULD say those things with honesty,
        because he was saintly.Let me hasten to console all concerned with
        that news that he was also very human. Face it, he had a lusty eye
        for Uriah's wife and conveniently arranged Uriah's death in battle
        to "legitimate" things. Nathan the prophet confronted David with the facts
        and the child born of his dalliance with Bathsheba died.

        Because this terribly human David had known so much of
        God, at least in the depths of his soul, he could easily make
        truthful remarks like these about himself! Once we know even a bit of
        God, scales begin to fall from our eyes and we can easily see how the Prophet
        could say such things: they are true!

        I sure know I am nothing, nothing at ALL without
        God. If I have done a good job here and there, make no mistake
        that I can tell you from an inside perspective that successes were
        just that: here and there. Not one of them would (or could!) have ever
        happened without God's grace. Nada. Zilch! The total workman profile
        has a LOT of gaps and stuff undone, deliberately and otherwise. The merit
        review will probably NOT recommend a raise at this time!

        We need the truth of humility because we take ourselves- and the
        falsehoods about ourselves - far, far too seriously. Yes, we
        sometimes need to know we really did "OK", but we also need to often
        remind ourselves that we are not so hot as we thought!

        "Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to Your Name give the glory!" Yet another of
        David's pithy assessments of self-worth. We are, of ourselves, less than
        nothing. It is only because of Christ that we can truly become the "immortal
        diamond" of which Hopkins wrote!

        Love and prayers,
        Jerome, OSB

        www.stmarysmonastery
        Petersham, MA

         

         

         

         

      • russophile2002
        +PAX In an awful typo yesterday , I wished Don Achille many “tears” in God’s service. I meant many YEARS. Mea culpa! Thanks to all who prayed for my ear
        Message 3 of 6 , Oct 3

          +PAX

           

          In an awful typo yesterday , I wished Don Achille many “tears” in God’s service. I meant many YEARS. Mea culpa!

           

          Thanks to all who prayed for my ear surgery, it went well.

           

          Prayers for all Franciscans on the feast of their founder, and for all friends of St. Francis and for all who bear his name.

           

          Prayers for Brian and Ginger, on their 20th wedding anniversary, many more years, ad multos annos!

           

          Prayers for Cole, electrocuted at work and covered with many burns. Prayers for his complete recovery.

           

          Prayers for Sabina, to depressive thoughts completely, and that she may find and marry a prayerful, loving, committed and well-settled spouse soon and for lots of love and peace in her family.

           

          Healing prayers for Patrice, her breast cancer has returned and she will be having a mastectomy. Prayers that they get all the cancer.

           

          Prayers for Mary, told by her doctor that she is nearing death. Prayers for her happy death and that she gets all the Sacraments and the Apostolic Pardon. Prayers for her family and all who will mourn her, especially D.

           

          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 3, June 4, October 4
          Chapter 7: On Humility

          The sixth degree of humility
          is that a monk be content
          with the poorest and worst of everything,
          and that in every occupation assigned him
          he consider himself a bad and worthless workman,
          saying with the Prophet,
          "I am brought to nothing and I am without understanding;
          I have become as a beast of burden before You,
          and I am always with You" (Ps:22-23).

          REFLECTION

          While it may be true that some people have self-esteems
          which are far too low, I think that many people, from my generation onward,
          have "worked through all that" with more than enough success. Relax,
          I think that often we have compensated for any imbalance and then some! With
          ears attuned to such 21st century self-affirmation, it is hard for us to hear
          lines like "worthless workman", "brought to nothing" and "a beast of
          burden before You."

          Understandably, we may listen through our filtered ears and wonder
          how on earth the Psalmist could say such things. Mechanisms to
          explain them away and denial defenses spring right up: " Must have
          been his primitive society, must have been some neurotic notion of
          religion in those days! Boy, that David REALLY needed to work on his
          self-image, so sad in a King, too!"

          I don't think any of those things are true in more than the most
          minimal sense, if that. David COULD say those things with honesty,
          because he was saintly. Let me hasten to console all concerned with
          that news that he was also very human. Face it, he had a lusty eye
          for Uriah's wife and conveniently arranged Uriah's death in battle
          to "legitimate" things. Nathan the prophet confronted David with the facts
          and the child born of his dalliance with Bathsheba died.

          Because this terribly human David had known so much of
          God, at least in the depths of his soul, he could easily make
          truthful remarks like these about himself! Once we know even a bit of
          God, scales begin to fall from our eyes and we can easily see how the Prophet
          could say such things: they are true!

          I sure know I am nothing, nothing at ALL without
          God. If I have done a good job here and there, make no mistake
          that I can tell you from an inside perspective that successes were
          just that: here and there. Not one of them would (or could!) have ever
          happened without God's grace. Nada. Zilch! The total workman profile
          has a LOT of gaps and stuff undone, deliberately and otherwise. The merit
          review will probably NOT recommend a raise at this time!

          We need the truth of humility because we take ourselves- and the
          falsehoods about ourselves - far, far too seriously. Yes, we
          sometimes need to know we really did "OK", but we also need to often
          remind ourselves that we are not so hot as we thought!

          "Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to Your Name give the glory!" Yet another of
          David's pithy assessments of self-worth. We are, of ourselves, less than
          nothing. It is only because of Christ that we can truly become the "immortal
          diamond" of which Hopkins wrote!

          Love and prayers,
          Jerome, OSB

          www.stmarysmonastery
          Petersham, MA

           



           

           


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