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Brother Jerome's Reflection: Oct 1

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  • michael_oblate (aka carmelitanum)
    +PAX Please pray for Katleen s sister Brigid, who had a mastectomy yesterday, the second in 10 years. Please pray for the happy death and eternal repose of
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 30, 2011

      Please pray for Katleen's sister Brigid, who had a mastectomy yesterday, the second in 10 years.

      Please pray for the happy death and eternal repose of Kayla, who adopted Lola's grandson fourteen
      years ago. Kayla, unfortunately, inherited Type 1 diabetes and had already had one kidney
      transplant. Lola just found out that Kayla died in 2010 as her mother had died before her of the same cause.

      Please pray for Br. Christian Swayne, OHC(episcopal) who is in the beginning stages of altzeimers disease. Christian was a very active and dynamic member of the order for decades - novice master for over 25 years and in Liberia and Ghana for decades.

      Prayers please for a young mother, married with small children who is very overweight and struggling with multiple health issues. Prayers that God puts the people in her life and her sister's life (who is also very overweight) that they make life changing habits and are blessed with excellent health in mind, body and spirit.

      Please pray for preemie twins born this past week 1.5 pounds each in neonatal intensive care.
      Also for Angelle - stroke on her way to rehab and for another stroke victim who also is in rehab.

      Keep me in your prayers this weekend as I travel to Maine for an Alumni weekend.
      Deacon Bill\

      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 31, June 1, October 1
      Chapter 7: On Humility

      The third degree of humility is that a person
      for love of God
      submit himself to his Superior in all obedience,
      imitating the Lord, of whom the Apostle says,
      "He became obedient even unto death."


      Looks a little repetitious here, doesn't it? Almost like St. Benedict
      was scraping the bottom of the barrel to find something to use for a
      third step, so he'd still wind up with twelve. Not so.

      This short passage tempts one to a short reading and that casual
      perusal will miss the terribly important things here. These are the
      important elements that frame and sustain our obedience: it is done
      for love of God, it is submission to another and it is lifelong.
      Remove any one of those mainstays and you no longer have a

      It is nothing to persevere to the end without love. Nothing. It is
      nothing to obey without love, war criminals did that quite admirably. Nor
      does it avail us anything at all to be obedient to ourselves: big
      challenge there! We'd wind up Sarabaites for sure, worshipping
      nothing but the idol of our own wills.

      This third degree gives the reason for Benedictine obedience: "for
      the love of God." We do not obey for so little as an orderly community,
      our obedience is not mere sociology, it is love. More even than just
      love, it is love of the One Who is Love at its highest perfection.

      We obey Love's delegates, our superiors, unto death. There are two
      meanings hidden in that phrase. It can mean martyrdom, obeying even
      to the point of being killed, but it also means obeying all of our lives,
      till the moment of our deaths. Frankly, few of us will be martyrs, because
      few of us are worthy of that grace. ALL of us, however, are called to the
      lifelong white martyrdom of obedience, which can often remind us that
      St. Teresa of Avila said that the martyrs "bought heaven cheaply", that
      they gained in one instant what the rest of us must plod on for many
      decades in a lifelong struggle to gain.

      Like Christ, for love, we become "obedient even unto death." During
      the Spanish Civil War, in the 30's, Communist forces raided the
      Benedictine monastery of El Pueyo, taking its 18 monks prisoner. One
      of the very significant things about this group is that many were
      just average monks, nothing special. All of them were martyred and
      one witness said that they went to their death "joyfully, as if going
      to a fiesta." These martyrs were members of our Subiaco Congregation
      and we are justifiably proud to have them as our brothers.

      Benedictine obedience of love, even unto death is decidedly not the
      kind that would please earthly tyrants. In fact, they'd gladly kill
      us for it. There is quite a likeness to our crucified Lord if we
      embrace that peril fully.

      Love and prayers,
      Jerome, OSB
      Petersham, MA
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