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Br. Jerome: Reflection on the Holy Rule. Oct 26

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  • Michael LoPiccolo
    +PAX Prayers for Sammy Hays who was seriously injured when the dump truck he was emptying rolled over and he was thrown through the windshield. He is in
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 25, 2007

      Prayers for Sammy Hays who was seriously injured when the dump truck
      he was emptying rolled over and he was thrown through the
      windshield. He is in intensive care in the hospital, conscious and
      asking for prayers.

      Please pray for Elizabeth K. and her continued healing. Just
      received her last round of chemo and now on to radiation and

      Please pray for Barbara, MERSA type infection; being treated with
      intravenous antibiotics. She is VERY sick and has developed vertigo
      and is finding it difficult to walk

      Please pray for Steve. He was in a TERRIBLE accident -- throat cut
      nearly ear to ear and in very serious condition.

      Please pray for 7 year old Kaitlyn who mourns the loss of her
      grandfather. Pray that the Lord will lift the great cloud of
      sadness that she carries and for the happy death and eternal rest of
      her grandfather..

      Please continue you prayer for safe travel for our good Brother

      +Please pray that Divine Mercy will shine upon all those who have
      taken their own lives.+

      Please pray for all those whose prayer requests were not able to be
      posted for whatever reason. God is outside of time and our prayers
      are never, ever late. 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

      Until the return of our good Brother Jerome please bless me with
      your prayer requests at:

      February 25, June 26, October 26
      Chapter 19: On the Manner of Saying the Divine Office

      We believe that the divine presence is everywhere and that "the
      eyes of the Lord are looking on the good and the evil in every
      place" (Prov. 15:3). But we should believe this especially without
      any doubt when we are assisting at the Work of God. To that end let
      us be mindful always of the Prophet's words, "Serve the Lord in
      fear" (Ps. 2:11) and again "Sing praises wisely" (Ps. 46:8) and "In
      the sight of the Angels I will sing praise to You" (Ps. 137:1).
      Let us therefore consider how we ought to conduct ourselves in
      sight of the Godhead and of His Angels, and let us take part in the
      psalmody in such a way that our mind may be in harmony with our


      If there were any phrase I could carve on the walls of every choir
      in the Order, it would be: "In the sight of the Angels I will sing
      praise to You." It stresses not only the lofty character (and
      cast!) of our sacrifices of praise, but also the demeanor we should
      have in offering them.

      This applies to parishes as well as to monasteries. In either
      milieu there can arise a certain foolish and unfortunate terrorism
      in "ministers" of rubric or music. The foregoing italics were not
      unintentional: when one terrorizes the flock over trivia, ministry
      has stopped. We are in the presence of the Angels, yet we sometimes
      easily forget that our brothers and sisters are each worth
      infinitely more than aesthetics, than music, than rubric. We must
      love people more than those!

      Dump on your sister or brother in the name of such things and you
      have missed the Bridegroom and married the Wedding March. Don't be
      too surprised if you find the Wedding March to be a less than
      thrilling spouse, a source of frustration rather than peace and joy!
      Whenever we use the constructs of rubric or music to hurt or demean
      one another, those Angels whose presence we ignore at our peril
      weep, and I think God does as well.

      The Presence of God that we miss so often should change our
      demeanour. Father Bede and I know we can say just about anything to
      each other. However, when Father Giles of Pluscarden took us to
      lunch with his friend, Countess Cawdor, you can bet that Father
      Bede and I were VERY well-behaved, subdued and deferential to the
      max!!! We behaved differently because of the woman the Countess is,
      and because we were in her home, a 13th century castle, not a
      sports bar with soccer on big screens and face-painted patrons
      awash in Guinness.

      Students act differently (usually worse, alas...) for a substitute
      teacher. Employees are different when the boss is off for the day.
      These assortments of different behavior are pretty much shot
      through the human condition, though not necessarily always a good

      The message here is no masks. Know Him in Whose presence and House
      you are. But really KNOW Him. That can take a lifetime of trying on
      and shedding as false different modes of conduct.

      God, like so many things, is very Benedictine in His perfection,
      which stands between the extremes in which we are prone to think of
      Him. If you think God is pretty much like the strictest teacher you
      ever had, who ran a real death camp of a classroom, guess again.
      You're dead wrong. On the other hand, neither is God some raunchy
      night club comedian, though I feel hopeful He has chuckled at some
      of my earthier moments more than once!

      God is Parent and Creator and we are always creatures, but we are
      not always children. We have to grow to the adult relationship with
      God that fortunate children eventually share with their parents.
      (If we never got to do this, and many haven't, establishing such
      with God is going to be a bit of a chore... Keep trying!)

      As we grow in our knowledge of God, our behavior around Him (and we
      are ALWAYS "around Him", that's another clear message of the Holy
      Rule!) changes. It becomes more real and more natural. It changes
      with a very clear eye to Whom God is and who we are. It changes
      from knowledge born of love and security.

      We often panic and are less comfortable than God or the people we
      think we are pleasing would ever wish. During my visit to Cawdor
      Castle, I was so busy being more polite than I'd ever been for that
      long in my life that I ALMOST forgot how badly I wanted a cigarette.
      I was the only smoker in our group.

      The Countess, who had never met me before, must have asked or noted
      somehow. At dessert, with no fanfare, an ashtray appeared at my
      place at table, no fuss, no ceremony, no problem. I was so stunned
      I had to ask to make sure it really WAS an ashtray. The message
      was: "Be who you are, you're my guest!" I wonder if the Countess
      knew how very
      much like God she was at that moment: real grace and class. Yeah,
      and mercy, too!

      Love and prayers,
      Jerome, OSB
      _http://www.stmarysmonastery.org_ (http://www.stmarysmonastery.org/)
      Petersham, MA
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