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Holy Rule for Mar. 18

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  • Br. Jerome Leo
    +PAX Prayers, please, for Eva, in hospice and sinking fast, and for her son, Dave, and all their family. Prayers, too, for Jerry and his daughters, Danielle
    Message 1 of 7 , Mar 17, 2008
      +PAX

      Prayers, please, for Eva, in hospice and sinking fast, and for her son, Dave, and all their family.

      Prayers, too, for Jerry and his daughters, Danielle and Dana, and their
      spiritual needs.

      Philip had a serious stroke and needs prayers . Lib and Dot, both elderly are under the weather right now with colds (that can be serious with both of them so please pray for them as well). 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 18, July 18, November 17
      Chapter 39: On the Measure of Food

      We think it sufficient for the daily dinner,
      whether at the sixth or the ninth hour,
      that every table have two cooked dishes
      on account of individual infirmities,
      so that he who for some reason cannot eat of the one
      may make his meal of the other
      Therefore let two cooked dishes suffice for all the brethren;
      and if any fruit or fresh vegetables are available,
      let a third dish be added.


      Let a good pound weight of bread suffice for the day,
      whether there be only one meal or both dinner and supper.
      If they are to have supper,
      the cellarer shall reserve a third of that pound,
      to be given them at supper.


      But if it happens that the work was heavier,
      it shall lie within the Abbot's discretion and power,
      should it be expedient,
      to add something to the fare.
      Above all things, however,
      over-indulgence must be avoided
      and a monk must never be overtaken by indigestion;
      for there is nothing so opposed to the Christian character
      as over-indulgence
      according to Our Lord's words,
      "See to it that your hearts be not burdened
      with over-indulgence" (Luke 21:34).


      Young boys
      shall not receive the same amount of food as their elders,
      but less;
      and frugality shall be observed in all circumstances.


      Except the sick who are very weak,
      let all abstain entirely
      from eating the flesh of four-footed animals.

      REFLECTION

      The Benedictine golden mean is that of the Lord Himself: we avoid
      over-indulgence because it burdens our hearts. This is true of any
      over-indulgence: food, drink, property. Our hearts are truly burdened
      by our excess, weighed down, kept from flight. Our hearts lag and
      fall with the awful results of having ourselves in charge of them!

      For those in the developed countries, this chapter on food can be a
      very good starting point of surrender. The Western nations in general
      and the U.S. in particular are spoiled rotten with food. Our notoriously poor
      diet choices are to blame for many health risks and I confess that I am
      just as guilty as anyone, even if I am trying to do a little better. Might
      not food be one of the healthiest and most logical places for ascetic striving to
      begin?

      The questions of diet raised here were looked at in purely monastic
      terms, as self-denial and penitential living. No one knew about
      cholesterol or fiber or many of the illnesses associated today with
      eating habits. Wasn't in their vocabulary. No quadruped meat was just
      a red herring between Cistercians and Benedictines, each arguing an
      opposite point solely on grounds of monastic observance. In every
      monastic writing I have ever encountered, abstinence from meat is
      always viewed as a voluntary deprivation, a means, like fasting, to
      subdue the body and its more earthy side.

      Fast forward to 2008. Red meat tastes great. I love it. NOTHING like
      a medium rare prime rib! Sadly, that is true in more than one sense,
      especially if, like me, you eat all the fat! Today we know that the
      eating habits encouraged here are worth a lot more than simple
      asceticism, they are healthy. Given that, something a lot more
      binding than the Holy Rule bids us look more closely: the 5th
      commandment, which insists that we not kill ourselves, either, that
      we guard our health.

      Granted, the times of meals stated here do not fit very well into a
      40 hour week of work and school. Not to worry. Our call here is to
      adapt. The content of monastic meals can be a big boon to health.
      Less meat, more beans, less beef, more chicken, buy decent bread and
      eat more of it. Or make your own! (Remember that bread machine that
      hardly got used after Christmas?) These are things one can gradually
      introduce to a family, too, provided one is a good cook. An extra
      meatless day or two a week is hardly noticed if you serve really good
      fare. Try dishes from the peasant cuisines of the world that stretch
      a very little meat a very long way.

      This Benedictine-inspired diet will not only be better for you and
      your family, it will benefit the planet, too. Grain-fed beef makes a
      horrible dent in the ecology and economy of the world, to say nothing
      of throwing effort and harvests into cattle that could feed starving
      human beings.

      Remember that earlier injunction about treating the goods of the
      monastery as sacred vessels of the altar? Well, the greatest goods
      any monastery or family has are its members and the planet that
      supports them. To own that fact is the beginning of a Benedictine
      ecology. Our diets are excellent places to make choices healthy for
      us and all the planet.

      We need our hearts (figuratively and literally!) in this struggle. A
      starving heart is just as crippled as a surfeited one. We need to
      find the balance- and that is often hard. But, with God's help and
      mercy, we can do all!

      Love and prayers,
      Jerome, OSB

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Br. Jerome Leo
      +PAX Deo gratias and prayers of thanksgiving, Br. Vincent s nephew and godson, David, is now cancer-free. Prayers that he remains so. Thanks to all who prayed
      Message 2 of 7 , Mar 17, 2016
        +PAX



        Deo gratias and prayers of thanksgiving, Br. Vincent's nephew and godson,
        David, is now cancer-free. Prayers that he remains so. Thanks to all who
        prayed for him and his family.



        Deo gratias, Joe's lost cat has returned, prayers of thanks.



        Please pray for enlightenment and courage for, Christine, a 32 yr old single
        woman who is seriously planning to abort her child tomorrow. There is a bed
        ready and waiting for her for Monday at a crisis pregnancy home but she
        wants the abortion on Friday morning. Please, ardent prayers for her,
        Christine, and her unborn child, storm heaven and prayers to our Lady for
        both.





        Prayers for the health of Mike, peritonitis, myeloma and on dialysis.



        Prayers for the health of Br. Meinrad.



        Please pray for Rena, the Bennett and Brown family, as Maria (sister) a 10
        year Lyme disease warrior, passed away suddenly from a heart attack while
        recovering from the flu. Prayers for her eternal rest and for all who mourn
        her.



        Please, also, pray for Kerrie's strength to help with her daughter's
        business issues while she is sick and that their family has nothing else to
        deal with right now.



        Please pray for Jessica, as she has been sick for 9 months now and they are
        having trouble getting her medications right.



        Please pray for Nick, who just figured out he made too much money last year
        and fears having to pay taxes. He is stressed, since he just lost his job,
        but has an interview tomorrow.



        Please pray for a special intention for Carol's nephew, Patrick.



        Prayers please for Diana's children and grandchildren making educational
        decisions with lasting impact.



        Prayers for healing for Alex's severe respiratory infection and Katie's
        stomach bug.



        Prayers for Lena Noel. She was just born on Monday and has a heart valve
        problem and may need surgery. The doctor said there is a chance it will heal
        on its own, so pray for that intention!



        Prayers for Brittany. She was diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic colon
        cancer which has already spread to her liver. She is getting married next
        month. Apparently her fiance is having a really hard time.



        Prayers for two deacons who are being ordained priests on this Saturday,
        feast of St Joseph, in Copenhagen. Prayers requested for their perseverance
        and ministry.



        Prayers for R., who is having a hard time away from the country she was born
        in, grieving for an old friend, feeling lonely and out of place. Pray that
        God's peace awakes in her and she realizes the love she is surrounded with
        and that God helps us wherever we are. Pray that she finds peace and
        happiness in this place.



        Prayers, please, for vocations to St. Mary's Monastery and to all our
        monasteries. Send laborers into the harvest, Lord!



        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 18, July 18, November 17
        Chapter 39: On the Measure of Food

        We think it sufficient for the daily dinner,
        whether at the sixth or the ninth hour,
        that every table have two cooked dishes
        on account of individual infirmities,
        so that he who for some reason cannot eat of the one
        may make his meal of the other
        Therefore let two cooked dishes suffice for all the brethren;
        and if any fruit or fresh vegetables are available,
        let a third dish be added.


        Let a good pound weight of bread suffice for the day,
        whether there be only one meal or both dinner and supper.
        If they are to have supper,
        the cellarer shall reserve a third of that pound,
        to be given them at supper.


        But if it happens that the work was heavier,
        it shall lie within the Abbot's discretion and power,
        should it be expedient,
        to add something to the fare.
        Above all things, however,
        over-indulgence must be avoided
        and a monk must never be overtaken by indigestion;
        for there is nothing so opposed to the Christian character
        as over-indulgence
        according to Our Lord's words,
        "See to it that your hearts be not burdened
        with over-indulgence" (Luke 21:34).


        Young boys
        shall not receive the same amount of food as their elders,
        but less;
        and frugality shall be observed in all circumstances.


        Except the sick who are very weak,
        let all abstain entirely
        from eating the flesh of four-footed animals.

        REFLECTION

        The Benedictine golden mean is that of the Lord Himself: we avoid
        over-indulgence because it burdens our hearts. This is true of any
        over-indulgence: food, drink, property. Our hearts are truly burdened
        by our excess, weighed down, kept from flight. Our hearts lag and
        fall with the awful results of having ourselves in charge of them!

        For those in the developed countries, this chapter on food can be a
        very good starting point of surrender. The Western nations in general
        and the U.S. in particular are spoiled rotten with food. Our notoriously
        poor
        diet choices are to blame for many health risks and I confess that I am
        just as guilty as anyone, even if I am trying to do a little better. Might
        not food be one of the healthiest and most logical places for ascetic
        striving
        to begin?

        The questions of diet raised here were looked at in purely monastic
        terms, as self-denial and penitential living. No one knew about
        cholesterol or fiber or many of the illnesses associated today with
        eating habits.. Wasn't in their vocabulary.

        Fast forward to 2011. Red meat tastes great. I love it. NOTHING like
        a medium rare prime rib! Sadly, that is true in more than one sense,
        especially if you eat all the fat! Today we know that the
        eating habits encouraged here are worth a lot more than simple
        asceticism, they are healthy. Given that, something a lot more
        binding than the Holy Rule bids us look more closely: the 5th
        commandment, which insists that we not kill ourselves, either, that
        we guard our health.

        Granted, the times of meals stated here do not fit very well into a
        40 hour week of work and school. Not to worry. Our call here is to
        adapt. The content of monastic meals can be a big boon to health.
        Less meat, more beans, less beef, more chicken, buy decent bread and
        eat more of it. Or make your own! (Remember that bread machine that
        hardly got used after Christmas?) These are things one can gradually
        introduce to a family, too, provided one is a good cook. An extra
        meatless day or two a week is hardly noticed if you serve really good
        fare. Try dishes from the peasant cuisines of the world that stretch
        a very little meat a very long way.

        This Benedictine-inspired diet will not only be better for you and
        your family, it will benefit the planet, too. Grain-fed beef makes a
        horrible dent in the ecology and economy of the world, to say nothing
        of throwing effort and harvests into cattle that could feed starving
        human beings.

        Remember that earlier injunction about treating the goods of the
        monastery as sacred vessels of the altar? Well, the greatest goods
        any monastery or family has are its members and the planet that
        supports them. To own that fact is the beginning of a Benedictine
        ecology. Our diets are excellent places to make choices healthy for
        us and all the planet. We need to find the balance- and that is often hard.
        But, with God's help and mercy, we can do all!

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



        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • russophile2002
        +PAX Prayers for Tim, our postulant, who is being clothed as a novice of St. Mary’s Monastery this morning. Prayers that he perseveres in his vocation all
        Message 3 of 7 , Mar 17

          +PAX

           

          Prayers for Tim, our postulant, who is being clothed as a novice of St. Mary’s Monastery this morning. Prayers that he perseveres in his vocation all his life and that many more like him come to join us. Prayers for our Community, that we may attract vocations and take care of those whom God sends us.

           

          Prayers for Fr. Rafaelito Alaras, OSB, newly confirmed as Prior Administrator, Abbey of Our Lady of Montserrat, Manila, and for all his Community.

           

          Prayers that some artifacts stolen from St. Leo Abbey may be found and returned and that the thief or thieves may repent and be converted.

           

          Prayers for Linda, making a leap of faith and beginning tithing.

          Prayers for Mitch, and for his wife.  He was married in December and has had a serious asthma attack leaving him on a ventilator.  

          Prayers for Lucy’s son, ill with whooping cough, and for safe travels, strength and grace for Lucy, prayers, too, that she can see her spiritual director before she leaves.

           

          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 18, July 18, November 17
          Chapter 39: On the Measure of Food

          We think it sufficient for the daily dinner,
          whether at the sixth or the ninth hour,
          that every table have two cooked dishes
          on account of individual infirmities,
          so that he who for some reason cannot eat of the one
          may make his meal of the other
          Therefore let two cooked dishes suffice for all the brethren;
          and if any fruit or fresh vegetables are available,
          let a third dish be added.


          Let a good pound weight of bread suffice for the day,
          whether there be only one meal or both dinner and supper.
          If they are to have supper,
          the cellarer shall reserve a third of that pound,
          to be given them at supper.


          But if it happens that the work was heavier,
          it shall lie within the Abbot's discretion and power,
          should it be expedient,
          to add something to the fare.
          Above all things, however,
          over-indulgence must be avoided
          and a monk must never be overtaken by indigestion;
          for there is nothing so opposed to the Christian character
          as over-indulgence
          according to Our Lord's words,
          "See to it that your hearts be not burdened
          with over-indulgence" (Luke 21:34).


          Young boys
          shall not receive the same amount of food as their elders,
          but less;
          and frugality shall be observed in all circumstances.


          Except the sick who are very weak,
          let all abstain entirely
          from eating the flesh of four-footed animals.

          REFLECTION

          The Benedictine golden mean is that of the Lord Himself: we avoid
          over-indulgence because it burdens our hearts. This is true of any
          over-indulgence: food, drink, property. Our hearts are truly burdened
          by our excess, weighed down, kept from flight. Our hearts lag and
          fall with the awful results of having ourselves in charge of them!

          For those in the developed countries, this chapter on food can be a
          very good starting point of surrender. The Western nations in general
          and the U.S. in particular are spoiled rotten with food. Our notoriously
          poor diet choices are to blame for many health risks and I confess that I am
          just as guilty as anyone, even if I am trying to do a little better. Might
          not food be one of the healthiest and most logical places for ascetic
          striving to begin?

          The questions of diet raised here were looked at in purely monastic
          terms, as self-denial and penitential living. No one knew about
          cholesterol or fiber or many of the illnesses associated today with
          eating habits. Wasn't in their vocabulary.

          Fast forward to 2011. Red meat tastes great. I love it. NOTHING like
          a medium rare prime rib! Sadly, that is true in more than one sense,
          especially if you eat all the fat! Today we know that the
          eating habits encouraged here are worth a lot more than simple
          asceticism, they are healthy. Given that, something a lot more
          binding than the Holy Rule bids us look more closely: the 5th
          commandment, which insists that we not kill ourselves, either, that
          we guard our health.

          Granted, the times of meals stated here do not fit very well into a
          40 hour week of work and school. Not to worry. Our call here is to
          adapt. The content of monastic meals can be a big boon to health.
          Less meat, more beans, less beef, more chicken, buy decent bread and
          eat more of it. Or make your own! (Remember that bread machine that
          hardly got used after Christmas?) These are things one can gradually
          introduce to a family, too, provided one is a good cook. An extra
          meatless day or two a week is hardly noticed if you serve really good
          fare. Try dishes from the peasant cuisines of the world that stretch
          a very little meat a very long way.

          This Benedictine-inspired diet will not only be better for you and
          your family, it will benefit the planet, too. Grain-fed beef makes a
          horrible dent in the ecology and economy of the world, to say nothing
          of throwing effort and harvests into cattle that could feed starving
          human beings.

          Remember that earlier injunction about treating the goods of the
          monastery as sacred vessels of the altar? Well, the greatest goods
          any monastery or family has are its members and the planet that
          supports them. To own that fact is the beginning of a Benedictine
          ecology. Our diets are excellent places to make choices healthy for
          us and all the planet. We need to find the balance- and that is often hard.
          But, with God's help and mercy, we can do all!

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

           

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