Holy Rule for Mar. 16
Prayers, please, for me, as I leave for California to give a retreat at Valyermo and prayers of thanks and gratitude for Michael LoPiccolo, who will be doing the Holy Rule for me.
Please pray for healing for Laura for healing and that she find meaningful employment. Tests show her cancer is not in remission and funds are extremely low.
For the happy death and eternal rest of Sarita Claire, 12, who died Thursday evening from heart-related conditions. And for her parents Ian and Kamala.
Please pray for Viktoria,21, and Sergej, 23, who will be baptized and confirmed and receive First Holy Communion today. May they walk in the Love of Christ.
Prayers for George, possible cancer, complicated by diabetes and
congestive heart failure, as well as depression over the recent death
of his sister. Prayers also for his loved ones helping him in this
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,
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
Many ardent prayers for Mario, substance abuse problem and getting help and treatment, may he stay clean and sober. Prayers, too, for his parents, D. and M. and all his family.
Prayers for Kristen, young wife & mother with serious cancer. Parishioners are praying to Ven. Rose Hawthorne for a miracle.
Prayers for Diana and her daughter, Diana left the Church long ago, prayers that they both may return.
Many ardent prayers for Steve, in hospice, that he may get all the Sacraments, and for his wife and family and all who will mourn him. Divine Mercy chaplets, please, from those so inclined.
Prayers for the eternal rest of Kathy, who died in her sleep, and strength for her husband, Mark and for their family. Kathy was a very devout prayer warrior.
Continued ardent prayers for Josh, drug problems and hopefully already in treatment.
Prayers for Patty, 56, who has been home battling bacterial pneumonia for over a week.
Prayers for the eternal rest of 35 girls killed in a fire at a state-run home for youth in Guatemala, and for their families and all who mourn them. Prayers, too, for the other girls at that facility, where allegations of abuse have prompted riots from those housed there.
Prayers for a man estranged from his children for many years, that they resume contact with him.
Prayers for E., that she go to Confession, also for Liz, that she go to Confession. It has been many years for both.
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 14, July 14, November 13
Chapter 35: On the Weekly Servers in the Kitchen
An hour before the meal let the weekly servers each receive a drink
and some bread over and above the appointed allowance, in order
that at the meal time they may serve their brethren without
murmuring and without excessive fatigue. On solemn days, however,
let them wait until after Mass.
Immediately after the Morning Office on Sunday, the incoming and
outgoing servers shall prostrate themselves before all the brethren
in the oratory and ask their prayers. Let the server who is ending
his week say this verse: "Blessed are You, O Lord God, who have
helped me and consoled me." When this has been said three times and
the outgoing server has received his blessing, then let the
incoming server follow and say, "Incline unto my aid, O God; O
Lord, make haste to help me." Let this also be repeated three times
by all, and having received his blessing let him enter his service.
Families, and parents and caregivers, listen up! There's an
important lesson here. No task is too small to be blessed by
prayer. More than that, no task is so easy that it can be done
without God's help, so remember to thank Him. Of ourselves, we can
do nothing, literally nothing. All our strength and power comes from God.
Making dinner or washing the dishes? Take a quiet moment in the
midst of either to say "Help!" and "Thanks!" Two simple, one word
prayers. No matter how chaotic your household, everyone will find
time for at least that. God knows the details, knows your heart and
can readily fill in the blanks! We may think God needs essay-length
prayers, but He doesn't. He may enjoy hearing from us, but trust
me, we NEVER tell Him anything that's news to Him.
This chapter is not simply the humility and charity of service, it
is also the honest acknowledgment of complete helplessness without
God. For most folks, only sickness or debility will teach them
that. It may seem like nothing to bend down and pick up a pin off
the floor until a bad back makes that impossible. Handicaps hone
our perceptions of being in charge very, very well.
Of course, there is another side to simple things like serving
table, picking up pins and the like. One could not have done
anything without God's help, but ah, if one does them out of love
and care! Bingo! Double coupons, so to speak! If that pin got
carefully picked up because of a barefoot and running child, or a
beloved pet who is prone to "tasting" whatever she can find on the
floor, simplicity becomes a very much greater matter, indeed. Now
it is very close to the heart of God, and that is a wonderful place
By the way, though some might think me daft for saying this, it is
not at all that crazy. There is no reason why families could not
bless whomever is assigned to a domestic task for a week or month
or whatever. A simple prayer asking God to help them serve us all
and get over any rough times could be tastefully done without a lot
of fuss. This could really help drive home the message of the worthwhile
merit to be had in doing small things with love!
Love and prayers,