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Holy Rule for July 4

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  • Br. Jerome Leo
    +PAX Prayes, please, for the spiritual, mental and physical health of the following, for all their loved ones and all who take care of them: Helen s husband,
    Message 1 of 211 , Jul 3, 2009

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

      Helen's husband, Rex, who died this morning of an undiagnosed condition.

      Karen M., whose ovarian cancer has returned after 5 1/2 years. She will undergo surgery on July 24.

      Fr. Gregory of Valyermo, his surgery is scheduled for tomorrow. May the
      neurosurgeon's hands be guided gracefully and may this relieve his

      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

      July 4, November 3
      Chapter 27: How Solicitous the Abbot Should Be for the Excommunicated

      Let the Abbot be most solicitous in his concern for delinquent brethren,
      for "it is not the healthy but the sick who need a physician" (Matt
      9:12) And therefore he ought to use every means
      that a wise physician would use.
      Let him send senpectae, that is, brethren of mature years and wisdom,
      who may as it were secretly console the wavering brother
      and induce him to make humble satisfaction; comforting him
      that he may not "be overwhelmed by excessive grief" (2 Cor. 2:7),
      but that, as the Apostle says, charity may be strengthened in him (2
      Cor. 2:8). And let everyone pray for him.

      For the Abbot must have the utmost solicitude and exercise all prudence
      and diligence lest he lose any of the sheep entrusted to him. Let him
      know that what he has undertaken is the care of weak souls and not a
      tyranny over strong ones; and let him fear the Prophet's warning through
      which God says, "What you saw to be fat you took to yourselves, and what
      was feeble you cast away" (Ezec. 34:3,4). Let him rather imitate the
      loving example of the Good Shepherd who left the ninety-nine sheep in
      the mountains and went to look for the one sheep that had gone astray, on whose
      weakness He had such compassion that He deigned to place it on His own
      sacred shoulders and thus carry it back to the flock (Luke 15:4-5).


      The Abbess is clearly expected to go the extra mile and a bit beyond for
      the erring monastic. Hope of reform is held for the longest possible
      time. However, remember balance, that Benedictine hallmark? Hope to the
      extreme would turn to damage. That balance, the moderator of reality,
      demands that, at some point, if literally all else has failed, the
      situation be faced for what it is and the monastic be made aware
      that conversion or departure are virtually the only options left.

      This is so important for families. How many of us know adults who are
      carrying baggage all their lives from a parent's mistake in this
      regard? All attention is focused on one child (or parent!) to the
      detriment of the rest of the family. Or all attention is focused on a
      child and it ruins the marriage. St. Benedict is very orthodox here:
      he calls us to heroic efforts, but not to stupidity, which would
      damage the rest of the family.

      OK, usually you cannot permanently "excommunicate" one of your
      children, that doesn't apply. But what does apply is that you can
      (even must, for the good of the rest of the group,) stop making
      that child or spouse or sibling or co-worker the determining, pivotal
      point in a dysfunctional three ring circus.

      Bosses, superiors, teachers and parents, anyone in authority can make
      the whole group suffer by mismanaging a troubled person. The untreated
      problem harries everyone and much of the blame for that rests with the
      one in a position to intervene. This is one of the very hard things the
      Holy Rule asks, to truly balance relationships that are often charged
      with all kinds of intense emotions.

      There are limits to our love for each sheep. Why? Because there are
      other sheep to be loved, too. The responsibility is spread over all.
      Yes, the shepherd may leave the 99 *for a while* to hunt for the lost
      one, but the rest of the flock may never be abandoned wholesale. A very
      hard saying, but, as St. Benedict so often is, right on the money!

      Love and prayers,
      Jerome, OSB
      Petersham, MA

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • russophile2002
      +PAX 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
      Message 211 of 211 , Mar 13



        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
        to be.

        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,
        Jerome, OSB
        Petersham, MA


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