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Holy Rule for Mar. 22

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  • Br. Jerome Leo
    +PAX Prayers for Vincent, on his first birthday, for his parents, grandparents and all his family. Bonnie, a routine exam and found a large mass on her ovary
    Message 1 of 7 , Mar 21, 2008
      +PAX

      Prayers for Vincent, on his first birthday, for his parents, grandparents and all his family.

      Bonnie, a routine exam and found a large mass on her ovary and she needs a hysterectomy. Unknown if the mass is cancerous or benign. The surgeon is on vacation next week so she'll have to wait until the following week for surgery- unfortunately further time to think and worry about it.

      Bill and Carol, still grieving loss of their only son and other health problems, too.

      Noel, in hospital with renal failure and for his wife, Wendy.

      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 22, July 22, November 21
      Chapter 43: On Those Who Come Late to the Work of God or to Table

      At the hour for the Divine Office,
      as soon as the signal is heard,
      let them abandon whatever they may have in hand
      and hasten with the greatest speed,
      yet with seriousness, so that there is no excuse for levity.
      Let nothing, therefore, be put before the Work of God.


      If at the Night Office
      anyone arrives after the "Glory be to the Father" of Psalm 94 --
      which Psalm for this reason we wish to be said
      very slowly and protractedly --
      let him not stand in his usual place in the choir;
      but let him stand last of all,
      or in a place set aside by the Abbot for such negligent ones
      in order that they may be seen by him and by all.
      He shall remain there until the Work of God has been completed,
      and then do penance by a public satisfaction.
      the reason why we have judged it fitting
      for them so stand in the last place or in a place apart
      is that,
      being seen by all,
      they may amend for very shame.
      For if they remain outside of the oratory,
      there will perhaps be someone who will go back to bed and sleep
      or at least seat himself outside and indulge in idle talk,
      and thus an occasion will be provided for the evil one.
      But let them go inside,
      that they many not lose the whole Office,
      and may amend for the future.


      At the day Hours
      anyone who does not arrive at the Work of God
      until after the verse
      and the "Glory be to the Father" for the first Psalm following it
      shall stand in the last place,
      according to our ruling above.
      Nor shall he presume to join the choir in their chanting
      until he has made satisfaction,
      unless the Abbot should pardon him and give him permission;
      but even then the offender must make satisfaction for his fault.

      REFLECTION

      For too many years, I have read this chapter as just one more outline
      of punishments for offenses. I missed completely the message to be
      found in its title and I suspect many others have, too. The Work of
      God and Table are lumped together. They are not exactly equal, but
      they have many similarities and are, in some instances, nearly equal.

      Now, this is not something most people would have guessed, especially
      with all the details about times of fasting and amounts of food and
      drink, but it is true nonetheless. St. Benedict links the places and
      times where body and soul are nourished because he esteems both. Like
      any truly orthodox monastic, he escapes the heretical trap of making
      body and matter evil and spirit alone good. Because we sometimes
      unconsciously fall into that trap ourselves, it is easy to misread
      him.

      Neither St. Benedict nor monastic life itself hates the body. Both
      wish to discipline and control it, to remove the obstacles it
      presents to our spirits, but neither can hate the body, because God
      created it and God Himself assumed it. Our bodies are sacred
      temples of the Holy Spirit.

      Talk all you will of bodily mortifications, but the bottom line is that
      nobody (quite literally, "no body",) is getting to the spiritual banquet without a
      truck to take them and that truck is the body. Kill it and you will
      not only have no means of allowing the soul to grow in time, but may
      well have violated the 5th commandment, as well, thereby fouling up
      your total efforts rather messily. Wow! What poor God has to untangle
      in His insistent love and will to save some of us!

      Monastic reforms over the centuries have frequently proclaimed a
      return to the "full rigor of the Rule." Whoops! Missed something
      there, folks. The Rule ain't rigorous. Says so himself, right in the
      Prologue: "...nothing harsh or burdensome." Being observant is one
      thing, but rigorous is quite another. To go beyond the Holy Rule in
      laxity OR austerity is a perilous mistake. Our Rule is balance and
      moderation. Take those away and the critter you are left with is no
      longer Benedictine.

      Rather than alienate the entire camp of those with Cistercian
      leanings in one fell swoop, I will give examples of failure on this
      count on BOTH sides at the time of the Cistercian reform in 1098.
      Cluny, remembered by some Benedictine historians with a bit of pride
      that is embarrassing, was WAY off the mark liturgically. Gee gaws and
      doo-dads and little Offices and devotions for days. Ruined the
      balance. One abbot over literally hundreds of daughter houses and
      thousands of monks. Ruined local autonomy. Not surprisingly, a lot of
      other unlovely stuff crept in. Given the lack of Benedictine balance
      to hone their vision, the fact that they overlooked the mess they
      were in is hardly shocking. Lots of pruning was in order.

      Along come the first Cistercians who point out (maybe a teeny bit
      self-righteously?) that those slimy Benedictines are not only failing
      to abstain from "the flesh of four-footed animals," but are dining
      quite nicely on just about anything within reach. Well, there is a
      point there, then and now!

      But there is a point against the reforms of Citeaux and La Grande Trappe,
      too. Want to get literalist? The Holy Rule says meat from quadrupeds.
      If it meant all meat, period, that would have been easier to say; it would
      have even saved some ink and parchment, in an age when neither were
      that easy to come by.

      But it didn't say that. That left fish and poultry wide open. The early
      Trappists didn't think so: meat, fish, eggs, milk and cheese ALL got
      banned. Okaaay..... But if you have only one oar in the water, you
      are quite likely to wind up going in circles...

      If the literal Rule is what you want, then take it, but always,
      always remember that the literal Rule cuts a LOT of slack and demands
      a lot of balance. Miss that and you might miss the boat entirely.

      Love and prayers,
      Jerome, OSB
      jeromeleo@...
      Petersham, MA

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Br. Jerome Leo
      +PAX Prayers for the safe release and return of Salesian Fr. Tom, abducted in Yemen when the Missionaries of Charity were killed and still missing. Prayers for
      Message 2 of 7 , Mar 21, 2016

        +PAX

         

        Prayers for the safe release and return of Salesian Fr. Tom, abducted in Yemen when the Missionaries of Charity were killed and still missing. Prayers for his family and for the conversion and repentance of his abductors and prayers that he will not be harmed.

         

        Prayers for Vincent, on his 9th birthday, may God bless him and all his family. Many more, ad multos annos!

         

        Prayers for the eternal rest of victims of the terrorist bombing in Istanbul and for the wounded and the families of all, and for all who mourn them. Prayers for the conversion of those responsible.

         

        Prayers for the eternal rest of the 62 people killed in an air crash in Russia, and for all their families and all who mourn them.

         

        Prayers for Fatima Kalina and the work she does with the disabled in Malawi, prayers that she gets the agency support she hopes for.

         

        Prayers for the eternal rest of 32 students killed and for the recovery of 17 injured in a school bus accident is Pain, and for the families of all and for all who mourn the departed.

         

        Prayers for eternal rest of  Svea, 23, who died in childbirth, and for her baby, who was stillborn. Prayers, too, for her husband and family and all who mourn Svea and her baby.

         

        Prayers for Wally, 63, who died from complications of multiple health problems, and for his brothers and sisters and all who mourn him.

         

        Prayers for Joy and her family, esp. Kristian, Abby, Nancy and Dick.

         

        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!

        March 22, July 22, November 21
        Chapter 43: On Those Who Come Late to the Work of God or to Table

        At the hour for the Divine Office,
        as soon as the signal is heard,
        let them abandon whatever they may have in hand
        and hasten with the greatest speed,
        yet with seriousness, so that there is no excuse for levity.
        Let nothing, therefore, be put before the Work of God.


        If at the Night Office
        anyone arrives after the "Glory be to the Father" of Psalm 94 --
        which Psalm for this reason we wish to be said
        very slowly and protractedly --
        let him not stand in his usual place in the choir;
        but let him stand last of all,
        or in a place set aside by the Abbot for such negligent ones
        in order that they may be seen by him and by all.
        He shall remain there until the Work of God has been completed,
        and then do penance by a public satisfaction.
        the reason why we have judged it fitting
        for them so stand in the last place or in a place apart
        is that,
        being seen by all,
        they may amend for very shame.
        For if they remain outside of the oratory,
        there will perhaps be someone who will go back to bed and sleep
        or at least seat himself outside and indulge in idle talk,
        and thus an occasion will be provided for the evil one.
        But let them go inside,
        that they many not lose the whole Office,
        and may amend for the future.


        At the day Hours
        anyone who does not arrive at the Work of God
        until after the verse
        and the "Glory be to the Father" for the first Psalm following it
        shall stand in the last place,
        according to our ruling above.
        Nor shall he presume to join the choir in their chanting
        until he has made satisfaction,
        unless the Abbot should pardon him and give him permission;
        but even then the offender must make satisfaction for his fault.

        REFLECTION

        For too many years, I have read this chapter as just one more outline
        of punishments for offenses. I missed completely the message to be
        found in its title and I suspect many others have, too. The Work of
        God and Table are lumped together. They are not exactly equal, but
        they have many similarities.

        Now, this is not something most people would have guessed, especially
        with all the details about times of fasting and amounts of food and
        drink, but it is true nonetheless. St. Benedict links the places and
        times where body and soul are nourished because he esteems both. Like
        any truly orthodox monastic, he escapes the heretical trap of making
        body and matter evil and spirit alone good. Because we sometimes
        unconsciously fall into that trap ourselves, it is easy to misread
        him.

        Neither St. Benedict nor monastic life itself hates the body. Both
        wish to discipline and control it, to remove the obstacles it
        presents to our spirits, but neither can hate the body, because God
        created it and God Himself assumed it. Our bodies are sacred
        temples of the Holy Spirit.

        Talk all you will of bodily mortifications, but the bottom line is that
        nobody (quite literally, "no body",) is getting to the spiritual banquet without
        a truck to take them and that truck is the body. Kill it and you will
        not only have no means of allowing the soul to grow in time, but may
        have violated the 5th commandment, as well, thereby fouling up
        your total efforts rather messily. I am aware that some saints seem to have had
        vocations to extremely penitential lives, but most of us do not. Dangerous
        austerity should be undertaken only when there is a clear call for it, confirmed
        by a wise spiritual director or confessor who knows one well.

        Monastic reforms over the centuries have frequently proclaimed a
        return to the "full rigor of the Rule." Whoops! Missed something
        there, folks. The Rule ain't rigorous. Says so himself, right in the
        Prologue: "...nothing harsh or burdensome." Being observant is one
        thing, but rigorous is quite another. To go beyond the Holy Rule in
        laxity OR austerity is a perilous mistake. Our Rule is balance and
        moderation. Take those away and the critter you are left with is no
        longer Benedictine.

        If the literal Rule is what you want, then take it, but always,
        always remember that the literal Rule cuts a LOT of slack and demands
        a lot of balance. Miss that and you might miss the boat entirely.

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

         

                         

         

      • russophile2002
        +PAX Urgent prayers for a child, Emma, who is on life support after a drowning accident, and for her parents and all her family. Prayers for Paul, preparing
        Message 3 of 7 , Mar 21

          +PAX

           

          Urgent prayers for a child, Emma, who is on life support after a drowning accident, and for her parents and all her family.

           

          Prayers for Paul, preparing for a holy death in hospice, and for his wife and family and those taking care of him, esp. those who bring him the Sacraments.

           

          Prayers for TomKay, listowner of Monastic Life list, whose birthday was Mar. 21, graces galore and many more, ad multos annos!

           

          Prayers for Vincent, on his 10th birthday, and for his parents and grandparents.

           

          Prayers for the eternal rest of Jeannie S., and for her family and all who mourn her.

           

          Prayers for the eternal rest of Sr. Margaret Mary, OSB, of the Monastery of the Glorious Cross, Branford, Connecticut, and for all her family, her Community and all who mourn her.

           

          Prayers for the eternal rest of Eileen G.’s mother, whose death anniversary was Mar. 21, and for Eileen and all her family and all who mourn her Mom.

           

          Continued prayers for the happy death of Chuck, he will not be receiving the Sacraments, as he is not Catholic, so many prayers that he is ready to meet the Lord. Prayers, too, for all who will mourn him, esp. Gail and John and Renick.

           

          Prayers for Nathan, in Oblate formation for St. John’s Abbey, Collegeville.

           

          Prayers for Larry, having surgery, for a successful operation and quick recovery.

           

          Continued prayers for a teacher we prayed for, he is fighting to keep his job in the face of unjust attacks and possible dismissal, he may have to get a lawyer to protect himself. Prayers that St. Joseph will protect him, his job and his family.

           

          Prayers for Joy and her family, Dick and Kristian, Jason and Abby and Nancy and Jason.

           

          Prayers for Br. Damian, who made his first vows at our Abbey in Praglia, Italy, on Mar. 21. May he persevere and may God grant him many years, ad multos annos!

           

          Prayers for Ray, mental illness.

          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!

          March 22, July 22, November 21
          Chapter 43: On Those Who Come Late to the Work of God or to Table

          At the hour for the Divine Office,
          as soon as the signal is heard,
          let them abandon whatever they may have in hand
          and hasten with the greatest speed,
          yet with seriousness, so that there is no excuse for levity.
          Let nothing, therefore, be put before the Work of God.


          If at the Night Office
          anyone arrives after the "Glory be to the Father" of Psalm 94 --
          which Psalm for this reason we wish to be said
          very slowly and protractedly --
          let him not stand in his usual place in the choir;
          but let him stand last of all,
          or in a place set aside by the Abbot for such negligent ones
          in order that they may be seen by him and by all.
          He shall remain there until the Work of God has been completed,
          and then do penance by a public satisfaction.
          the reason why we have judged it fitting
          for them so stand in the last place or in a place apart
          is that,
          being seen by all,
          they may amend for very shame.
          For if they remain outside of the oratory,
          there will perhaps be someone who will go back to bed and sleep
          or at least seat himself outside and indulge in idle talk,
          and thus an occasion will be provided for the evil one.
          But let them go inside,
          that they many not lose the whole Office,
          and may amend for the future.


          At the day Hours
          anyone who does not arrive at the Work of God
          until after the verse
          and the "Glory be to the Father" for the first Psalm following it
          shall stand in the last place,
          according to our ruling above.
          Nor shall he presume to join the choir in their chanting
          until he has made satisfaction,
          unless the Abbot should pardon him and give him permission;
          but even then the offender must make satisfaction for his fault.

          REFLECTION

          For too many years, I have read this chapter as just one more outline
          of punishments for offenses. I missed completely the message to be
          found in its title and I suspect many others have, too. The Work of
          God and Table are lumped together. They are not exactly equal, but
          they have many similarities.

          Now, this is not something most people would have guessed, especially
          with all the details about times of fasting and amounts of food and
          drink, but it is true nonetheless. St. Benedict links the places and
          times where body and soul are nourished because he esteems both. Like
          any truly orthodox monastic, he escapes the heretical trap of making
          body and matter evil and spirit alone good. Because we sometimes
          unconsciously fall into that trap ourselves, it is easy to misread
          him.

          Neither St. Benedict nor monastic life itself hates the body. Both
          wish to discipline and control it, to remove the obstacles it
          presents to our spirits, but neither can hate the body, because God
          created it and God Himself assumed it. Our bodies are sacred
          temples of the Holy Spirit.

          Talk all you will of bodily mortifications, but the bottom line is that
          nobody (quite literally, "no body",) is getting to the spiritual banquet without
          a truck to take them and that truck is the body. Kill it and you will
          not only have no means of allowing the soul to grow in time, but may
          have violated the 5th commandment, as well, thereby fouling up
          your total efforts rather messily. I am aware that some saints seem to have had
          vocations to extremely penitential lives, but most of us do not. Extreme
          austerity should be undertaken only when there is a clear call for it, confirmed
          by a wise spiritual director or confessor who knows one well.

          Monastic reforms over the centuries have frequently proclaimed a
          return to the "full rigor of the Rule." Whoops! Missed something
          there, folks. The Rule ain't rigorous. Says so himself, right in the
          Prologue: "...nothing harsh or burdensome." Being observant is one
          thing, but rigorous is quite another. To go beyond the Holy Rule in
          laxity OR austerity is a perilous mistake. Our Rule is balance and
          moderation. Take those away and the critter you are left with is no
          longer Benedictine.

          If the literal Rule is what you want, then take it, but always,
          always remember that the literal Rule cuts a LOT of slack and demands
          a lot of balance. Miss that and you might miss the boat entirely.

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


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