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Holy Rule for May 5

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  • Br. Jerome Leo
    +PAX Prayers for the victims of a Sunday terrorist attack against a column of buses taking young Christian students to Mosul which killed four and injured
    Message 1 of 149 , May 4 9:12 AM
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      Prayers for the victims of a Sunday terrorist attack against a column of buses taking young Christian students to Mosul which killed four and injured 171, at least 17 seriously. Prayers for the eternal rest of the dead and the spiritual, mental and physical health of the wounded and for the families of all. Prayers, too for the conversion of the perpetrators.

      Prayers of thanks and Deo gratias for the following:

      Barb, motorcycle accident victim we have been praying for is doing very well, but still in rehab. Continued prayers, please.

      John got a job, prayers that he can keep it and that Colleen get a job now, too. Prayers also for peace in their family and for them to have a child if God wills in the way that God wills.

      Vince had a very good firt Oblate experience, now prayers for his meeting with his pastor.

      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 4, May 5, September 4
      Prologue (continued)

      Having our loins girded, therefore,
      with faith and the performance of good works (Eph. 6:14),
      let us walk in His paths
      by the guidance of the Gospel,
      that we may deserve to see Him
      who has called us to His kingdom (1 Thess. 2:12).

      For if we wish to dwell in the tent of that kingdom,
      we must run to it by good deeds
      or we shall never reach it.

      But let us ask the Lord, with the Prophet,
      "Lord, who shall dwell in Your tent,
      or who shall rest upon Your holy mountain" (Ps. 14:1)?

      After this question,
      let us listen to the Lord
      as He answers and shows us the way to that tent, saying,
      "The one Who walks without stain and practices justice;
      who speaks truth from his heart;
      who has not used his tongue for deceit;
      who has done no evil to his neighbor;
      who has given no place to slander against his neighbor."

      This is the one who,
      under any temptation from the malicious devil,
      has brought him to naught (Ps. 14:4)
      by casting him and his temptation from the sight of his heart;
      and who has laid hold of his thoughts
      while they were still young
      and dashed them against Christ (Ps. 136:9).

      It is they who,
      fearing the Lord (Ps. 14:4),
      do not pride themselves on their good observance;
      but,
      convinced that the good which is in them
      cannot come from themselves and must be from the Lord,
      glorify the Lord's work in them (Ps. 14:4),
      using the words of the Prophet,
      "Not to us, O Lord, not to us,
      but to Your name give the glory" (Ps. 113, 2nd part:1).
      Thus also the Apostle Paul
      attributed nothing of the success of his preaching to himself,
      but said,
      "By the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10).
      And again he says,
      "He who glories, let him glory in the Lord" (2 Cor. 10:17).

      REFLECTION

      Very briefly, there is an excellent theology of works and faith here.
      We need to
      recognize that there is no good in our works that is not of God, of
      the saving act of Jesus. We also need to hear that
      works are important means of showing God how much we love Him and
      believe in Him. Works are the logical result of faith. We all
      need faith and no one is anything at all in terms of good without
      God, without Christ's perfect sacrifice.

      Our Baptism allows us to do good, because it incorporates (literally
      "in-bodies"
      us!) into God. In His Mystical Body, we receive the boon of the ability to
      do good.
      We can get so accustomed to this that we can forget that without Him we
      could do absolutely nothing of any worth whatever. That is why it is so very
      important to make the Morning Offering, to tie our own poor works, prayers,
      joys and sufferings to those of Christ and the Cross. Plunged into Jesus,
      they become tools of infinite merit and worth!

      So yes, we must do good works, but, "Not to us, O Lord, not to us,
      but to Your name give the glory!" Works and faith are not the Western
      thought dichotomy of "yes and no" of, "either or," but the Zen mind
      of "both and." Without God, neither works nor ourselves have any
      meaning at all. With God, both are enriched, but only because of Him.

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


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    • Br. Jerome Leo
      +PAX Don, for whom we prayed, has died without seeing the Priest. Ardent prayers for the repose of his soul and for his brother, Jim, his wife and family and
      Message 149 of 149 , Jun 6, 2010
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        Don, for whom we prayed, has died without seeing the Priest. Ardent prayers for the repose of his soul and for his brother, Jim, his wife and family and all who mourn him.

        Kaitlin, whose test we prayed for has also been able to get out of the bad real estate deal she was enmeshed in. Deo gratias, and thanksgiving prayers!

        Lola, whose back surgery we prayed for, has now developed pain/numbness in her other leg. Unsure of the cause, possibly a bone chip or spur, they are taking her back to surgery this afternoon. Continued prayers, please, and for her brother, Richard and all their family.

        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 6, June 7, October 7
        Chapter 7: On Humility

        The ninth degree of humility
        is that a monk restrain his tongue and keep silence,
        not speaking until he is questioned.
        For the Scripture shows
        that "in much speaking there is no escape from sin" (Prov. 10:19)
        and that "the talkative man is not stable on the earth" (Ps. 139:12).

        REFLECTION

        OK, if you are a parent, you cannot speak to your children only when
        they question you. The therapy bills in later years would be
        astronomical. There are many situations in a Benedictine life lived
        in the world, among non-monastics, where this has to be altered, but
        its kernel of truth must be discovered and maintained.

        WHY do we talk needlessly? Quite often it is nothing more than a
        trick to change the reality around us. We are bored, or we feel we
        are not getting enough attention or we think the mood too heavy, so
        we speak to change whatever annoys us at the moment. I should know.
        I am infamous for creating my own entertainment when things seem
        dull to me. That's not always a great idea...

        Some tough moments, some difficult stuff are meant to be endured.
        They are part of our necessary learning and growth. Ever notice how
        we assess a child's maturity by its ability to be quiet and non-
        fidgety in surroundings (like Church!) that do not spoon feed its
        attention span? Well, the same is true of us at every stage. We do
        ourselves harm if we defuse every single tense moment with a word or
        two. We cheat ourselves.

        All too often we speak only to remind the universe around us, which
        has carelessly forgotten for a second that we are its center, of a
        whole bevy of falsehoods: I am the cutest, smartest, or wittiest, I
        have the solution to all of this. What folly on the part of the
        entire cosmos to forget our importance! Better speak to clear the
        matter up...

        Those who know me are thinking: "HE wrote THIS?!?" Yes, alas, I am
        guilty of all I wrote. Three times a year the Holy Rule reminds me of
        that and each time I am aware that I need to work on it. Thanks be to
        God, the Rule IS read three times a year: usually by the time the
        next reading comes up, my interest has flagged and I have to start
        over. As for the part about the talkative not being "stable on the
        earth," well, there have been times in the last 18 years
        when God had to nail my feet to the floor to keep me faithful and I am
        not dead yet... I have not always been His most willing pupil, but
        oh, is He ever patient! And infinitely merciful!

        But, as one Desert Father said, that's what we do all day in
        monasteries: "We fall down and we get up."

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



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