Holy Rule for May 22
Prayers, please, for the spiritual, mental and physical health of the folloiwng, for all their loved ones and all who take care of them:
Jill, who has lost her dog companion of nearly 15 years, Jodie, to cancer. She is heartbroken.
Eileen Healey who lost her husband Michael yesterday and for his eternal rest and all who mourn him.
The nuns from Stanbrook Abbey, Worcestershire who moved today into their new Stanbrook Abbey at Wass, North Yorkshire.
For Kathleen and Gorden as they begin married life: That Gorden, who is Wiccan, find his faith in the Lord through Kathleen and may they both know His blessing on a long and happy life together.
For Sarah and her four children 11-4, as her husband of 15 years ends their marriage. May her estranged husband, Scott, who says he's an atheist, find his way back to the Lord in true repentance, submission and healing. Also, pray that Sarah's treatment for a precancerous condition be successful.
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 21, May 22, September 21
Chapter 4: What Are the Instruments of Good Works
To fulfill God's commandments daily in one's deeds.
To love chastity.
To hate no one.
Not to be jealous, not to harbor envy.
Not to love contention.
To beware of haughtiness.
And to respect the seniors.
To love the juniors.
To pray for one's enemies in the love of Christ.
To make peace with one's adversary before the sun sets.
And never to despair of God's mercy.
These, then, are the tools of the spiritual craft.
If we employ them unceasingly day and night,
and return them on the Day of Judgment,
our compensation from the Lord
will be that wage He has promised:
"Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
what God has prepared for those who love Him" (1 Cor. 2:9).
Now the workshop
in which we shall diligently execute all these tasks
is the enclosure of the monastery
and stability in the community.
Employ them ALL? "Unceasingly, day and night,"??? Give me a break!
You have GOT to be kidding. There are lots of these I couldn't pull
off if I spent a year working on each one alone- and I do NOT have 72
years left, especially if some are going to take way longer than a
year a piece. This is beyond me.
You bet it is, folks! It's beyond all of us, but He isn't kidding,
and neither is St. Benedict. Both know something that our egocentric
eyes can miss- it ain't about us or our strength, it is ALL about our total
weakness and the complete triumph of grace. The effective use of
these tools is grace and gift. Any successes besides that are nothing
but clever gymnastics.
In fact, it is really all about our own wretchedness being lifted up and
out by the saving act of Jesus Christ: His grace, His help, His salvation.
Our own efforts without Him are nada, zilch, absolute zero. The closer we come
to see and know Christ, the clearer this fact becomes.
One very quick little thought: even the tools we do manage to
pull off using are not our own, we are to return them on the Day of
Judgment!!! Hey, before we fall all over ourselves, patting our own
backs for this or that, we are doing it all with borrowed tools!
Humbling thought there and a further confirmation of the paragraph
We need to ask God for His help and grace to become saints, we need
to ask Him for the loan of those tools of good works from His workshop.
The ability to become holy comes from God, from grace. No one at all
can do it without that. We must cooperate with His grace and mercy
and gifts. He is not stingy with His grace, but we must ask for all we can use!
We dare not say we are unable to be holy. Holy is not
linked to our ability, but to our receptivity to God's grace and His
mercy and will. He makes up for what is lacking in us, for lacks that
we could never supply. That's the wonder of all this! God uses our
weakness to triumph, God uses us to demonstrate His own omnipotence.
Our frailty becomes His praise. Wow!
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,