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