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Holy Rule for Feb. 19

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  • Br. Jerome Leo
    +PAX Prayers for a happy and peaceful death for Kathy, sister of Sr. Pat H. Prayers for Ben, multiple injuries after a bad fall. Lord, help us all as You know
    Message 1 of 144 , Feb 18, 2013
      +PAX

      Prayers for a happy and peaceful death for Kathy, sister of Sr. Pat H.

      Prayers for Ben, multiple injuries after a bad fall.

      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 19, June 20, October 20
      Chapter 16: How the Work of God Is to Be Performed During the Day

      "Seven times in the day," says the Prophet,
      "I have rendered praise to You" (Ps. 118:164).
      Now that sacred number of seven will be fulfilled by us
      if we perform the Offices of our service
      at the time of the Morning Office,
      of Prime, of Terce, of Sext, of None,
      of Vespers and of Compline,
      since it was of these day Hours that he said,
      "Seven times in the day I have rendered praise to You."
      For as to the Night Office the same Prophet says,
      "In the middle of the night I arose to glorify You" (Ps. 118:62).


      Let us therefore bring our tribute of praise to our Creator
      "for the judgments of His justice" (Ps. 118:164)
      at these times:
      the Morning Office, Prime, Terce, Sext, None,
      Vespers and Compline;
      and in the night let us arise to glorify Him.

      REFLECTION

      Tucked neatly into all this business of naming and counting the Hours
      of the Divine Office comes the actual reason we go to choir or say
      the Office alone. It is "our tribute of praise to our Creator 'for
      the judgments of His justice' "

      OK, tribute, praise, glorify, all those things are familiar enough to
      us, but the zinger here is "for the judgments of His justice."
      Whoops! A lot fall out on that one! Whether we realize it or not, the
      reason we praise God as Benedictines is to thank Him for ALL His
      decisions in regard to us. That isn't easy, but it is terribly valid
      and terribly necessary.

      We thank God- admittedly sometimes with gritted teeth- for all the
      things that did and DIDN'T work out the way we wanted them, for every
      acceptance and every rejection that brought us to be as we find
      ourselves today, in His arms. The jobs we didn't get, the great loves
      which were not reciprocal, the course we flunked, the kids that went
      wrong, the illness that dogs us, the spouse we should never have gone
      out with twice, the unwanted pregnancy, EVERYTHING
      that has shaped our lives and persons is something we thank God for
      in the Office, everything He either permitted to happen or willed for us.

      I mention only the difficult things, because anybody can be thankful
      that the apparently GOOD stuff worked out. I am not saying all the
      bad stuff is God's fault, or that it's our own fault, but ALL of it
      is turned to GOOD by God, He alone can do that, and that is worth singing about!
      All of it! If we look back honestly, we can see the hand of His goodness in the
      darkest times, we can see it in NOT having our way, we can see it in
      everything.

      Since the way God turns all to good is a mystery we shall never know
      fully in this life, we cannot adequately say much of anything but
      thanks and praise, the stammered joy of someone who has received a
      really great gift and is astounded at such generosity. Thanks, God.
      And hey, You really DID know what You were doing all along, didn't
      You?

      Truly, truly, God's will *IS* best! And all is mercy and grace!!!

      A final word about the "seven times daily" part. Many regret that they
      cannot do the whole Office. Indeed, few Oblates in the world have
      lives that can easily accommodate that. Start with small steps. Believe me,
      if one just makes a point of recalling Jesus' presence in our hearts
      and souls seven times a day, that is a firm and wondrous beginning!
      Doesn't take long and fits any schedule. Try it and I think you will see
      what I mean, as well as a change in yourself.

      Love and prayers,
      Jerome, OSB
      Petersham, MA






      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Br. Jerome Leo
      +PAX Prayers for the at least 37 killed and 15 injured in a plane crash in Kyrgyzstan. For the eternal rest of the dead, the recovery of the wounded and for
      Message 144 of 144 , Jan 16

        +PAX

         

        Prayers for the at least 37 killed and 15 injured in a plane crash in Kyrgyzstan. For the eternal rest of the dead, the recovery of the wounded and for the families of all. Prayers, too, for those who lost homes or property, half of the village was destroyed by the crash.

         

        The Salesians invite all to join them in praying a novena to Mary Immaculate, Help of Christians, for the release of kidnapped Fr. Tom in Yemen. The novena is from January 15-23.

         

        Prayers for the eternal rest of JP. For whom we prayed, and for all his family, especially his son, and all who mourn him.

         

        Prayers for John, facing two hours of dental implant surgery on Tuesday, may all go well and may he recover quickly.

         

        Prayers for Donna, on her birthday, graces galore and many more, ad multos annos!

         

        Prayers for the eternal rest of Br. Augustine, 58, of the Maronite monks in Petersham, Holy Trinity Monastery, and for his Community, family and all who mourn him.

         

        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 17, May 18, September 17
        Chapter 3: On Calling the Brethren for Counsel

        In all things, therefore, let all follow the Rule as guide,
        and let no one be so rash as to deviate from it.
        Let no one in the monastery follow his own heart's fancy;
        and let no one presume to contend with his Abbot
        in an insolent way or even outside of the monastery.
        But if anyone should presume to do so,
        let him undergo the discipline of the Rule.
        At the same time,
        the Abbot himself should do all things in the fear of God
        and in observance of the Rule,
        knowing that beyond a doubt
        he will have to render an account of all his decisions
        to God, the most just Judge.

        But if the business to be done in the interests of the monastery
        be of lesser importance,
        let him take counsel with the seniors only.
        It is written,
        "Do everything with counsel,
        and you will not repent when you have done it" (Eccles. 32:24).

        REFLECTION

        The key here is not to contend insolently; there is no proscription
        against telling the Abbot one feels something is amiss, so long as it
        is done respectfully and humbly. We are Benedictines, not fascists;
        we have a Father, not a Fuhrer.

        Human nature being what it is, people are usually more prone to cite
        the Abbot's responsibility to seek counsel than they are to cite the
        equally important proscription against contending with one's Abbot!
        There's a cure for that and many other ills buried within this
        chapter, a telling phrase whose observance promises peace. That
        little gem urges the monastics not to follow their "own heart's
        fancy."

        Follow that gem and peace abounds! For one thing, whether abbot or
        monastic, parent or child, boss or employee, the focus of the
        relationship ceases to become self. None of us is anywhere near the
        big deal we'd either like to be or think ourselves to be! Much of
        what seems earth-shattering to us is really small stuff, indeed.

        This is so important to monastic struggle because it is so intricately
        interwoven with detachment and holy indifference. We must learn how
        to hold onto our inner peace, how to safeguard it from damage at the
        hands of trivia. An abject TERRIBLE day for us, one when we are so
        hurt or angry that the world seems to have stopped, is just another average
        day for the rest of the community. Until, of course we decide we ARE
        the center of the universe and ruin it for them... Cling to that
        knowledge of trivia and less will suffer!

        At that point of recognizing trivia, truth and therefore, humility
        enter into the equation. We need very good "trivia
        detectors" and their default setting must be aimed at ourselves,
        rarely cast elsewhere except in cases of really great need. We can
        keep those detectors more than amply busy just in our own hearts
        and wills! We need to know deception, falsity, trivia, but it is
        essential to know them first in ourselves.

        If these good tools of detection are aimed only at others, the result
        will be pride and a fall, not humility and truth. Jesus said "I am
        the Truth," and to Him we must prefer nothing. Hence, our first
        desire must always be the truth and the truth is that the earth does
        not revolve around us as an axis!

        Our age, particularly, has embraced the idea of "Follow your bliss!"
        Well, maybe...sometimes.... but maybe not, too. Our "bliss" is no
        guarantee of infallibility. Years ago, and for many years of my life,
        I thought my "bliss" would be very different from where I finally wound up.

        As a handy rule of thumb, I would say that the will of God quite
        often looks nothing like bliss at first. Hence, confusing bliss with
        the divine will can be very risky. The will of God often BECOMES
        bliss when we are in the midst of following it, or in hindsight, but we
        frequently have to be dragged, kicking and screaming, into that compliance!

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

         

         

         

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