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Holy Rule for Feb. 13

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  • Br. Jerome Leo
    +PAX Prayers, please, for the spiritual, mental and physical health of the folloiwng, for all their loved ones and all who take care of them: Kristen, who has
    Message 1 of 53 , Feb 12, 2009
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      Prayers, please, for the spiritual, mental and physical health of the folloiwng, for all their loved ones and all who take care of them:

      Kristen, who has an interview this weekend, for a scholarship she is applying for.

      Another tumor was found in Freddie's brain this week. Chemo, then surgery. This was quite a shock for him and his wife Linda. It doesn't look good.

      Shirley, unbearable pain and her pain meds no longer available in generic form, co-pay will be nearly $100 a month.

      Baby Sophia, having surgery.

      Belated birthday prayers for Judith. May she have many more and graces galore.

      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


      February 13, June 14, October 14
      Chapter 11: How the Night Office Is to Be Said on Sundays


      On Sunday
      the hour of rising for the Night Office should be earlier.
      In that Office let the measure already prescribed be kept,
      namely the singing of six Psalms and a verse.
      Then let all be seated on the benches in their proper order
      while the lessons and their responsories are read from the book,
      as we said above.
      These shall be four in number,
      with the chanter saying the "Glory be to the Father"
      in the fourth responsory only,
      and all rising reverently as soon as he begins it.


      After these lessons
      let six more Psalms with antiphons follow in order, as before,
      and a verse;
      and then let four more lessons be read with their responsories
      in the same way as the former.


      After these let there be three canticles
      from the book of the Prophets,
      as the Abbot shall appoint,
      and let these canticles be chanted with "Alleluia."
      Then when the verse has been said
      and the Abbot has given the blessing,
      let four more lessons be read,
      from the New Testament,
      in the manner prescribed above.


      After the fourth responsory
      let the Abbot begin the hymn "We praise You, O God."
      When this is finished
      the Abbot shall read the lesson from the book of the Gospels,
      while all stand in reverence and awe.
      At the end let all answer "Amen,"
      and let the Abbot proceed at once
      to the hymn "To You be praise."
      After the blessing has been given,
      let them begin the Morning Office.


      This order for the Night Office on Sunday
      shall be observed the year around,
      both summer and winter;
      unless it should happen (which God forbid)
      that the brethren be late in rising,
      in which case the lessons or the responsories
      will have to be shortened somewhat.
      Let every precaution be taken, however,
      against such an occurrence;
      but if it does happen,
      then the one through whose neglect it has come about
      should make due satisfaction to God in the oratory.

      REFLECTION

      Making the comparatively safe assumption that the majority of those
      reading this will not be spending the wee hours of Sunday celebrating
      three nocturns instead of two, what do we glean from this? Well, for
      starters, let's note that St. Benedict goes out of his way to make
      Sunday special year-round, even when he would at other times shorten
      the Office. Making Sunday special, by the way, was not some novel
      idea of his own: it's a commandment of God, one we often forget these
      days.

      Sunday is not just a day off. Sunday is not observed by just cramming
      Church in somehow and the rest of the day no different. The Roman
      Catholic practice of Saturday Vigil Masses can really throw a wrench
      into this: do it late Saturday afternoon and "get it out of the way."
      Whoops! In spite of the theological and liturgical justifications of
      a Vigil Mass, that's what it often boils down to in people's minds:
      less than an hour, done late the day before, and you're done! Not!!!

      If Sunday affords no extra time at all to you for rest, for prayer,
      for lectio, please change something. I know one family who can't make
      it to Mass on Sunday because of sports schedules for several kids in
      different games. What will those kids grow up thinking of as
      Sabbath? A rushed 45 minute Mass Saturday evening, if that? How many
      observant Jews does one find in that dilemma? None. They know what
      comes first.

      No one took the Sabbath away from Christians: we surrendered it
      ourselves! It is, by the way, still there waiting, just as God is, for us
      to take back. Fully within our power to do so. All we have to do
      is change ourselves. That can be hard at first, but the rewards are
      immense.

      Many of us can clearly recall when no stores were open
      on Sunday, save a few of the gas stations and an emergency
      pharmacy. I wonder how our willingness to make Sunday just another
      shopping day contributed to the change we see today?

      Albert Schweitzer once said that the proof that Christianity had
      failed in Europe was war. I would say that the only proof needed to
      say that our Christian theology of the Sabbath has failed is to take
      a look at what's left of Sunday. And please don't blame the pagans
      for this one: we are at the root of the problem. Most likely at fault
      was our legalistic idea of "youse goes to Church and youse done with it."

      Hence, don't go running for some Christian source to read up on the
      Sabbath. Check out your library or bookstore for some good Jewish
      books on how to keep the seasons, holidays and Sabbath. You're going
      to have a refreshing surprise. You're going to find deep holiness and
      you're going to find it largely "home-made" by the believers
      themselves, in their own homes. If you whine, as Christians can, how
      tough it is to run uphill against a secular world's Sunday, bear in mind that
      Jews are doing all this themselves on SATURDAY, with absolutely no
      cooperation from government or business or society at all.

      This Sunday observance, by the way, is not imposing monasticism on your
      children: it's making them Christian. Not an optional job!

      Love and prayers,

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

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Br. Jerome Leo
      +PAX Prayers, please for the spiritual, mental and physical health of the following, for all their loved ones and all who take care of them: Dave, recurrent
      Message 53 of 53 , Mar 13 8:38 AM
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        +PAX

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

        Dave, recurrent prostate cancer, seeing oncologist on the 18th, and for Elaine, his wife.

        Tom, upper erosive esophagitus, a stomach ulcer and hiatal hernia. The current meds are
        not helping the problem. Seeing doctor today.

        Joyce, who had surgery and several organs are filled with cancer.
        The family needs prayers as it is very hard for them to deal with the diagnosis.

        Carol, undergoing surgery to repair leg tendons on Thursday... for a safe operation, and a quick, comfortable, and complete recovery.

        Prayers for the happy death and eternal rest of Doris, who has gone to God, for all her family and all who mourn her.

        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 13, July 13, November 12
        Chapter 35: On the Weekly Servers in the Kitchen

        Let the brethren serve one another, and let no one be excused from
        the kitchen service
        except by reason of sickness or occupation in some important work.
        For this service brings increase of reward and of charity. But let
        helpers be provided for the weak ones, that they may not be
        distressed by this work; and indeed let everyone have help, as
        required by the size of the community or the circumstances of the
        locality. If the community is a large one,
        the cellarer shall be excused from the kitchen service; and so also
        those whose occupations are of greater utility, as we said above.
        Let the rest serve one another in charity.

        The one who is ending his week of service shall do the cleaning on
        Saturday. He shall wash the towels with which the brethren wipe
        their hands and feet; and this server who is ending his week, aided
        by the one who is about to begin, shall wash the feet of all the
        brethren. He shall return the utensils of his office to the
        cellarer clean and in good condition,
        and the cellarer in turn shall consign them to the incoming server,
        in order that he may know what he gives out and what he receives
        back.

        REFLECTION

        I know some houses have moved away from having table waiters, but
        something is lost in that. We have cafeteria style first portions
        here, then the waiter goes around to offer seconds and clears the
        dishes. It isn't a really big deal, but it does have a great reward,
        as the Holy Rule points out. Because we are a small community, only
        8, everyone, even the Superior takes a turn at waiting.

        Formerly, in some houses (maybe in all, but I am not sure,) the
        Abbot would wait tables on Holy Thursday. There was a nice
        connection there: he who held the place of Christ waited on all on
        the feast of the Last Supper, and washed the feet of twelve in
        Church that day.

        The connection here is personalist. Waiting on people connects you
        very much to them, as any waiter could tell you. Restaurants may
        not pursue that connection to any depth, but a home situation, like
        a monastery, surely does. There's a great notion here for Oblates
        who
        do not live alone: take turns waiting. We can get slumped into Dad
        or Mom or husband or wife always being waiter or waited upon.
        Switch off, care for each other, in this and many, many other ways!

        There are tons of ways of serving another, serving each other, that
        have nothing at all to do with tables or dining. There are many,
        many, equivalent forms of foot-washing. Hunt for them diligently and
        practice them with deep love!

        Love and prayers,

        Jerome, OSB
        http://www.stmarysmonastery.org

        Petersham, MA





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