Br. Jerome: Reflection on the Holy Rule. March 16
Please pray for: Rob, newly diagnosed Hodgkin's and starting
treatment this week; CL, kidney disease and in a lot of pain; AG,
Please pray for continued healing for our good Brother Jerome.
Please pray for Cheryl's sister Lori and her her family. Lori was
hospitalized needing a liver. They are working on her but she is not
responsive as of last night.
+Please pray that Divine Mercy will shine upon all those who have
taken their own lives.+
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
March 16, July 16, November 15
Chapter 37: On the Old and Children
Although human nature itself is drawn to special kindness towards
these times of life, that is towards the old and children, still
the authority of the Rule should also provide for them.
Let their weakness be always taken into account, and let them by
no means be held to the rigor of the Rule with regard to food. On
the contrary, let a kind consideration be shown to them, and let
them eat before the regular hours.
The tenderness of St. Benedict shines through here. These are
strong words for weakness: "ALWAYS taken into account," and "BY NO
MEANS held to the rigor of the Rule for food." Though he prefaces
his chapter recalling that any healthy human nature has a certain
of consideration for these age groups, our holy Father Benedict
quickly returns to a very consistent theme of the Holy Rule: we are
called to more than mere nature. We are called to enhance our
nature to the heights of sanctity. Our considerate mindfulness for
person and their individual needs must be greater than that of the
St. Benedict's aim is that each of us ALWAYS see the person first.
That kind of loving mindfulness will make the chapters on the sick
and the young and old complete no-brainers. This is the way we
should be seeing everyone: real people for whom they really are,
nothing more or less. Circumstances do arise that require greater
attention, but the foundation of that is a firm theology of
It should come as no great shock that the most frequent obstacle to
viewing others correctly is ourselves. Our own image, our self, our
projections get in the way of the lens of truth. We have to spend
our monastic struggle learning to put those things aside, so that
the light of others may shine through unobstructed. With our own
needs at least on a back burner, or better yet, shelved far off in
the pantry, we can begin to truly see others and their needs. Wipe
the mud of self from our eyes and we can see the treasures that
us. Mother Teresa of Calcutta surely did that. She saw beauty that
all of us less holy than she missed big-time and she saw it in
A key to all this is a favorite quote from Antoine de St.
Exupery's "Little Prince":
"The essential is invisible to the eyes. One can only see rightly
with the heart."
That's what our Rule demands: the cultivation of the very loving
eyes of our hearts! And we open those eyes by expanding our hearts
Love and prayers,