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Holy Rule for Dec. 20

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  • Br. Jerome Leo
    +PAX Prayers, please, for the spiritual, physical and temporal welfare of the following, for all their loved ones and all who takke care of them: Ben, Sarah, &
    Message 1 of 59 , Dec 19, 2012
      +PAX

      Prayers, please, for the spiritual, physical and temporal welfare of the following, for all their loved ones and all who takke care of them:

      Ben, Sarah, & Jacob traveling across country from Arizona for Christmas. Safe travel as they are driving.

      little Myla, in ICU again with serious heart problems, and for her parents,

      Simon, who is critically Ill in hospital with pneumonia and broken ribs and leg and is being fed by tubes after a very serious car accident and another friend who broke his arm & is feeling guilty after the accident.

      Mrs. Service, 50, possibly dying of cancer, and for her seminarian son who has been called to fly home to be with her. Two other seminarians have lost theiir mothers this month and another seminarian's father had a serious heart attack. Prayers for them all.

      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, BJL

      April 20, August 20, December 20
      Chapter 64: On Constituting an Abbess

      In the constituting of an Abbess
      let this plan always be followed,
      that the office be conferred on the one who is chosen
      either by the whole community unanimously in the fear of God
      or else by a part of the community, however small,
      if its counsel is more wholesome.

      Merit of life and wisdom of doctrine
      should determine the choice of the one to be constituted,
      even if she be the last of the order of the community.

      But if (which God forbid)
      the whole community should agree to choose a person
      who will acquiesce in their vices,
      and if those vices somehow become known to the Bishop
      to whose diocese the place belongs,
      or to the Abbots, Abbesses or the faithful of the vicinity,
      let them prevent the success of this conspiracy of the wicked,
      and set a worthy steward over the house of God.
      They may be sure
      that they will receive a good reward for this action
      if they do it with a pure intention and out of zeal for God;
      as, on the contrary, they will sin if they fail to do it.

      REFLECTION

      Monasteries can forget sometimes that they are not their own, one of
      the unavoidable risks of Benedictine autonomy. While it was usual, in
      St. Benedict's day, for monasteries to be under their local bishop
      (and still is usual in the East today,) St. Benedict says something
      even more telling. The local laity should intervene if the monastery
      conspires to elect a loser! Now THAT is going a long way!

      Monasteries become dear to those around them, and a sense of
      ownership for their local monastery arises in many hearts. St.
      Benedict actually endorses that. The monk is not his own, but neither
      is the whole community. We belong to the Church, we belong to our own
      locale, we belong to the people in a very special way. It entitles
      them to warn us that we may have gone amiss and it obliges us to
      always recall that our monasteries have ripple effects!

      Many of us in the workplace or school, some of us even in marriage,
      are forced to deal with people who were NOT chosen for their "merit
      of life and wisdom of doctrine." That can be very tough, but grace
      and the Holy Rule are there to strengthen us.

      The single most important thing the one governed can do to thwart bad
      government is NOT to mirror the behavior which is at fault. Two
      wrongs can never make a right. All too often, for whatever reason,
      people push our buttons and get exactly the sick response from us
      that they sickly need. Try not to let that happen. Put a control on
      your buttons. Never stoop to the level that annoys you, and believe
      me, that stooping is easy to do.

      Hard and perennial truth, but many of the things which annoy us most
      in others are our own sins, in one form or another.We might reflect those
      faults in different areas, in different ways, but this can only help
      us in denial. Look, look very carefully at the person who makes you
      the most angry. Most of us will not have to look honestly for very
      long to see why we are affected strongly.

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




      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Br. Jerome Leo
      +PAX Happy and blessed Thanksgiving Day to all in the US who are celebrating today. God be thanked for His many blessings to us all. Prayers for all and
      Message 59 of 59 , Nov 23, 2016

        +PAX

         

        Happy and blessed Thanksgiving Day to all in the US who are celebrating today. God be thanked for His many blessings to us all. Prayers for all and especially for the safety of those travelling.

         

        Prayers for Cas, who has gastrointestinal cancer. Prayers, too, for Bev, his wife, and Gabrielle, their daughter. Bev is a classmate of mine from Tampa Catholic High.

         

        Prayers for Fr. Benedict Nivakoff, OSB, newly appointed Prior of the Benedictine community at Norcia, Italy, and continued prayers for them as they recover from the catastrophic damage the earthquake did to their monastery and basilica.

         

        Prayers for Christopher, 13, in hospice care at home with brain cancer and thought to be very close to death. Prayers for his family, too, and for all who will mourn him.

         

        Prayers for Daniel, had an injection for knee pain, knee reduced to bone on bone and will eventually need a replacement.

         

        Prayers for the eternal rest of Greg, and for all his family and all who mourn him.


        Prayers for the eternal rest of Stella, 92, a Benedictine Oblate, and prayers for her family and all who mourn her.

         

        Prayers for B., for her return to the Faith.

         

        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 25, July 25, November 24
        Chapter 45: On Those Who Make Mistakes in the Oratory

        When anyone has made a mistake
        while reciting a Psalm, a responsory,
        an antiphon or a lesson,
        if he does not humble himself there before all
        by making a satisfaction,
        let him undergo a greater punishment
        because he would not correct by humility
        what he did wrong through carelessness.

        But boys for such faults shall be whipped.

        REFLECTION

        Calm down, we don't whip anybody anymore. It has too often been my
        experience that such lines push all the buttons of some readers these
        days and blind them to the rest of the good stuff there. We don't
        whip now, they did 1,500 years ago, everyone else did, too. Let's not
        get so mired in the sensitivities of our own time that we forget how
        terribly recent some of them are.

        As I have mentioned before, in our house we do kneel in the center
        when late for choir, then bow to the superior and go to our
        place. We also kneel when we make audible mistakes in Church. And
        yes, those things, as I pointed out, can be very useful.

        But most Oblates do not have a choir to kneel in, so
        what's here for the majority of us? There is the grace of humility,
        without which communal life on any level, in monastery, workplace, market or
        home would be unlivable.


        Every single human community or whatever sort is going to have its
        share of kinks, strays and crosses. Every one without fail
        will mirror in some sense the fallen brokenness of humanity. The
        gamut of human flaws exists in microcosm, in at least some mitigated form,
        in every human group.

        Even more annoyingly, most, if not all, pieces of our OWN broken
        humanity will be modeled, much to our distaste, by others around us. It is,
        alas, our own sins and faults in others that tend to annoy us most. Never
        forget to check for that. He or she may REALLY tick you off because
        of the great similarities between you!

        Our job is to see to it that we are part of the solution, not part
        of the problem. When, through whatever means, we become part of the problem,
        we must own up to it at once and smooth it over as best and as
        quickly as we can.

        If you can't say "I'm sorry," for heaven's sake- quite literally- start
        practicing alone in front of a mirror until the words can somehow
        tumble out in public. Until they can, try some useful (though not
        perfect,) substitutes, like "Excuse me," or "It was my fault." Work
        on words of forgiveness, too, like: "It doesn't matter," or "Oh,
        that's OK,".

        Strive to make light of things. There will never be any
        shortage whatever of people who will explode and magnify things out
        of all rational proportion, so don't duplicate services! Join the
        minority and try to prevent hurricanes in teacups, rather than
        produce them.

        Most outrage, most lack of apology, most tempests in teacups stem
        from a distorted an unhealthy view of the self. Humility corrects
        that imbalance. While you're in front of the mirror practicing
        apology, why not try a bit of self-interview?

        WHY do these things or persons upset you so? What do you have in
        common with those who annoy you most? Most important, just who the
        heck ARE you that your perceived slights are such a big deal? Try
        reminding yourself that He is God and you are not. Honest reflection on these
        points may be a big and promising start.

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

         

         

         

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