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Holy Rule for Apr. 10

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  • jeromeleo@stmarysmonastery.org
    +PAX Prayers, please for the happy death and eternal rest of Nicole, 16, killed in a car wreck on her way home from Mass, and for all who mourn her, also for
    Message 1 of 5 , Apr 9, 2008
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      Prayers, please for the happy death and eternal rest of Nicole, 16, killed in a car wreck on her way home from Mass, and for all who mourn her, also for Megan, 16, who was driving and is in very serious condition and for both their families, as well as for the other driver who broadsided them.

      Prayers for the eternal rest of Jonathan, 2, a Downs Syndrome child, and for his parents and large family. They have adopted many challenged and special needs children.

      Prayers for the spiritual, mental and physical health of the following, for all their loved ones and all who take are of them:

      Oblate Paula, serious health problem, God knows the details.

      Maxine, frequent and severe headaches.

      Tim, laid off from his job and for his wife, Audrey.

      Mary, open heat surgery later this month and her health has not been good, and for John, her seminarian son

      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.

      April 10, August 10, December 10

      Chapter 57: On the Artisans of the Monastery

      If there are artisans in the monastery,
      let them practice their crafts with all humility,
      provided the Abbot has given permission.
      But if any one of them becomes conceited
      over his skill in his craft,
      because he seems to be conferring a benefit on the monastery,
      let him be taken from his craft
      and no longer exercise it unless,
      after he has humbled himself,
      the Abbot again gives him permission.

      If any of the work of the craftsmen is to be sold,
      those responsible for the sale
      must not dare to practice any fraud.
      Let them always remember Ananias and Saphira,
      who incurred bodily death (Acts 5:1-11),
      lest they and all who perpetrate fraud
      in monastery affairs
      suffer spiritual death.
      And in the prices let not the sin of avarice creep in,
      but let the goods always be sold a little cheaper
      than they can be sold by people in the world,
      "that in all things God may be glorified" (1 Peter 4:11).


      My all-time favorite quote from G. K. Chesterton is: "The artistic
      temperament is a disease which afflicts amateurs." Amen!!! Ideally,
      Christian life itself has no place whatever for prima donnas or mad
      queens (of either gender!) but monastic life most assuredly does not.

      The true artist is marked by humility, not because of low self-
      esteem, but because of a healthy dose of reality, a firm conviction
      that one's gift has been given by God and given with an eye to the
      service of all. Christian art, in any form, has no meaning at all
      outside of the glory of God and the betterment of the community.

      For an artisan to become proud about this would be as ludicrous as for a
      priest to be proud of his ability to consecrate, or a lay person proud
      of their ability to baptize. Sorry, folks! Doesn't come from us.
      Comes from God and we have to always remember our own littleness in
      receiving such wonders.

      A wrong attitude towards one's gift can quickly turn what God
      intended to be a boon to the Christian community into a very large
      and unmanageable human cross. Unfortunately, this sort of cross is
      not rare.

      Art matters in communities, it must be treasured and held dear, because
      it is a gift from a loving God. The trap here is that art must always and
      everywhere matter less than the people performing or enjoying it. The
      brothers and sisters come first, and they do so from a theological imperative
      of charity, much, much more intense than any human reason concept of art
      or canon of aesthetics.

      Furthermore, in one sense, the artist must matter least of all, must
      behind the gift, must not insist on being thrust into a foreground of power
      trips and control. When a person does liturgy correctly, they vanish behind
      veil of vesture and rubric. They become icon bearers and what is seen is no
      longer Traci or Jason, but acolyte and priest. It ought to be so with
      artists, but it ought to be so with any gift or skill God has
      graciously given us. "He must increase, I must decrease..."

      As soon as we forget that, our gift becomes a weight dragging us
      downwards to potentially ultimate loss, rather than helping us to
      ascend the heights. Good superiors can see this and stop it, but not all
      superiors have that knack! Let us pray that our gifts will always be focused
      by the wise and loving hand of some realist, to whom God has given
      the gift of loving truthfulness!

      Love and prayers,

      Jerome, OSB
      Petersham, MA

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