Holy Rule for May 15
Prayers, please, for the spiritual, mental and physical health of the following, for all their loved ones and all who take care of them:
Betty, we prayed for her in
January when they found a cancerous mass in her lung. She had half of her
left lung removed and has recovered from that surgery, but they've found a
spot on her right lung too which they are monitoring.
the staff in Jobcentreplus in the UK who are considerably under stress with workloads , new systems, acquiring new knowledge and dealing with customers in need.
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
January 14, May 15, September 14
Chapter 2: What Kind of Person the Abbess Ought to Be
The Abbess should always remember what she is
and what she is called,
and should know that to whom more is committed,
from her more is required (Luke 12:48).
Let her understand also
what a difficult and arduous task she has undertaken:
ruling souls and adapting herself to a variety of characters.
One she must coax, another scold, another persuade,
according to each one's character and understanding.
Thus she must adjust and adapt herself to all
in such a way that she may not only suffer no loss
in the flock committed to her care,
but may even rejoice in the increase of a good flock.
We have seen a lot of things that lessen the culpability of parents,
abbots, and those in charge. St. Benedict, however, is the relentless fan
of balance, so here come a couple of zingers that cannot be
overlooked. In its purest form, Christian authority is a precious
stone, indeed, but the gold in which that stone is set is
responsibility. Because the abbess has the ultimate authority to make
decisions alone, she ultimately has the responsibility, too. Try to
shirk that and everyone suffers.
Delegation does not end that responsibility. Give one man or woman
that much power and the buck really does stop there. Hard saying, but
St. Benedict cites Jesus Himself as remarking that more is required
of those to whom so much has been committed. There may be elements
that qualify and reduce that expectation of more, but there is no way
to remove it altogether.
Tucked in the folds of this portion is another warning. The abbot or
parent must recall that they have undertaken a difficult and arduous
task. One can wish to be an abbot or parent for utterly wrong
reasons. Grace can overcome these, God often lets us do the right
thing for the wrong reason, but if the parent or abbot does not later
cooperate with the grace, trouble ensues.
Jesus washed feet, telling us He was giving us an example and
mandate. (Why do you think the ceremony of foot washing got named
"Mandatum"? That's where we got the English term "Maundy Thursday".)
I think it's a safe bet that these days, when feet are most generally
cleaned in tubs or showers, Jesus would be cleaning toilets. It just
strikes me as what would be most like Him. Mothers and fathers can tell
you that their authority requires them to clean a good deal more than just
toilets! Parents and nurses who are faced with some of the most disgusting
stuff to clean up can be absolutely certain that their hands are the hands of
Christ in that moment.
Wouldn't it be a better world if such loving humility was required of
all authority? If Jesus could do it as God, what lesser official
dares quibble with His standards?
Love and prayers,
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
- I have no idea why this didn't go through yesterday. Catching up. BJL+PAXPrayers for the grace-filled success of our Oblate Day and our Sisters' Monastic Experience weekend at Petersham and for all participating.Urgent prayers needed for Brian's brother-in-law, Paul. He is a diabetic, and now has been diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer. It is stage 3, and a biopsy this coming Tuesday will check to see if he is stage 4. He will be starting chemo & radiation. His wife is devastated. Brian has known Paul since they were very young, loves him like a brother and is crushed. Please pray for Paul, his wife, Brian and all their family and friends.Deo gratias, the twin's fluid build up is gone.
Prayer for Brian T.,( another Brian,) who is being viciously harrassed.
Prayers for JS, discernment and assistance in making an important life decision.
Prayers for Beverly, special intention plus dicernment regarding another of perplexing issues..
Deo gratias for all prayers and graces of the past.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,