Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Holy Rule for Mar. 24

Expand Messages
  • Br. Jerome Leo
    +PAX Deo gratias, Doris, 85, came through her heart valve surgery very well. Lord, help us all as You know and will. God s will is best. All is mercy and
    Message 1 of 143 , Mar 23, 2013
    • 0 Attachment
      +PAX

      Deo gratias, Doris, 85, came through her heart valve surgery very well.

      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 24, July 24, November 23
      Chapter 44: How the Excommunicated Are to Make Satisfaction

      One who for serious faults is excommunicated
      from oratory and table
      shall make satisfaction as follows.
      At the hour when the celebration of the Work of God is concluded
      in the oratory,
      let her lie prostrate before the door of the oratory,
      saying nothing, but only lying prone with her face to the ground
      at the feet of all as they come out of the oratory.
      And let her continue to do this
      until the Abbess judges that satisfaction has been made.
      Then, when she has come at the Abbess's bidding,
      let her cast herself first at the Abbess's feet
      and then at the feet of all,
      that they may pray for her.

      And next, if the Abbess so orders,
      let her be received into the choir,
      to the place which the Abbess appoints,
      but with the provision that she shall not presume
      to intone Psalm or lesson or anything else in the oratory
      without a further order from the Abbess.

      Moreover, at every Hour,
      when the Work of God is ended,
      let her cast herself on the ground in the place where she stands.
      And let her continue to satisfy in this way
      until the Abbess again orders her finally to cease
      from this satisfaction.

      But those who for slight faults are excommunicated
      only from table
      shall make satisfaction in the oratory,
      and continue in it till an order from the Abbess,
      until she blesses them and says, "It is enough."

      REFLECTION

      No matter how we came by it, one nasty little of baggage that a lot
      of us carry is the inability to say: "It is enough." For some of us,
      forgiving ourselves or believing we have been forgiven or even
      sensing that we have made all the reparation possible or necessary is
      all but completely impossible. (Any other obsessive/compulsive disorders
      out there reading this? Welcome to the club, I pray for us all daily!)

      There is great blessing for such people to have an Abbot. Even there,
      tremendous trust and obedience are required, because the Evil One
      would very much prefer that our upset and lack of faith continue! An
      Abbot can put and end to many matters, if only we allow that to
      happen. Abbots can offer resolution to many situations and the Holy
      Rule confirms them in this power again and again. The buck really
      stops there!

      If we let it stop there.... That can be so hard. However, even though
      most of us reading this do NOT live with Abbots, we all live with
      God, with Christ. He and He alone is in charge of our forgiveness, of
      the extent of our reparation or penance. He knows all too well the
      extremes of self-damage we can go to without His intervention and He
      does intervene, if only we have the faith to allow Him, to listen, trust and
      believe. We all ought to seek regular confessors who can also help
      us in this regard. Either confessor or Abbot can set many, many cares
      to rest!

      I am finding lately, much to the relief of my obsessive/compulsive
      heart and soul, that I really can achieve vastly greater amounts of
      inner serenity and peace by putting an affair in my superior's hands
      and accepting his judgement. There is the key to the value of this:
      inner peace and serenity. We badly need those aids to spiritual growth.
      Anything which increases their strength is a chance we ought never to
      miss!

      The Divine Mercy of God is His greatest attribute, linked inseparably
      to His love. We could never for an instant imagine the full extent of
      that Mercy's grandeur. We do Christ a terrible disservice and
      discourtesy when we refuse to believe that His riches are for us,
      that only others can be forgiven, but we must struggle on and "save
      ourselves" with Pelagian bootstraps firmly in hand! What a sneaky
      inverse pride there is in such feelings: I am so special (even so
      specially wicked!) that I cannot be like the rest of them!

      Mercy, mercy and always mercy! If you do not have a superior to live
      with, please learn to accept that mercy from God. If you do have a
      superior, learn to accept God's mercy through that channel. If you
      *ARE* a superior or parent or teacher, strive to be that channel.
      Mercy, mercy, always mercy!

      Love and prayers,

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


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Br. Jerome Leo
      +PAX Prayers, please, for the following, and for all their families and all who take care of them: Barbara, dementia worsening, major meltdown on Friday, and
      Message 143 of 143 , Jun 1, 2013
      • 0 Attachment
        +PAX
        Prayers, please, for the following, and for all their families and all who take care of them:

        Barbara, dementia worsening, major meltdown on Friday, and for her husband, Jim.

        a member of Jane's family newly diagnosed with cancer.

        Al. His vision is critical to his work. He had cataract surgery and now the lens that was implanted will have to be removed Monday and replaced with a new one. Doc says there is a high risk of a detached retina. Please pray that God will guide the surgeon's hands and for complete healing.

        Denise, that she get her marriage blessed and return to the Sacraments.

        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 1, June 2, October 2
        Chapter 7: On Humility

        The fourth degree of humility
        is that he hold fast to patience with a silent mind
        when in this obedience he meets with difficulties
        and contradictions
        and even any kind of injustice,
        enduring all without growing weary or running away.
        For the Scripture says,
        "The one who perseveres to the end,
        is the one who shall be saved" (Matt. 10:22);
        and again
        "Let your heart take courage, and wait for the Lord" (Ps. 26:14)!


        And to show how those who are faithful
        ought to endure all things, however contrary, for the Lord,
        the Scripture says in the person of the suffering,
        "For Your sake we are put to death all the day long;
        we are considered as sheep marked for slaughter" (Ps. 43:22; Rom.
        8:36).
        Then, secure in their hope of a divine recompense,
        they go on with joy to declare,
        "But in all these trials we conquer,
        through Him who has granted us His love" (Rom. 8:37).
        Again, in another place the Scripture says,
        "You have tested us, O God;
        You have tried us a silver is tried, by fire;
        You have brought us into a snare;
        You have laid afflictions on our back" (Matt. 5:39-41).
        And to show that we ought to be under a Superior,
        it goes on to say,
        "You have set men over our heads" (Ps. 65:12).


        Moreover, by their patience
        those faithful ones fulfill the Lord's command
        in adversities and injuries:
        when struck on one cheek, they offer the other;
        when deprived of their tunic, they surrender also their cloak;
        when forced to go a mile, they go two;
        with the Apostle Paul they bear with false brethren (2 Cor. 11:26)
        and bless those who curse them (1 Cor. 4:12).

        REFLECTION

        Be careful how you read this fourth step of patience. It is an ideal,
        presented in its most flawless form. It is not an unreachable goal, but neither
        should we expect significant progress before noon today. It is our call and
        our vocation, but it is a lifelong task.

        The danger for schleps like me is that this step can give one an image
        of a perfect, 1950's TV sitcom Mom: shirt dress, high heels and pearls as
        everyday wear, cookies and milk always forthcoming in a kitchen as clean
        as a surgical suite and never a hair out of place. Full make-up on rising
        and wears hat and matching gloves to shop. PUHLEEEZE! Give me a break.
        Real patience in action is not at all like that.

        Patience in action is a fierce struggle. Never think that it's easy for
        others and therefore something is wrong with you: it isn't easy
        for anyone. One of the biggest flaws of the "I'm OK and you are
        not..." school of ministry is that it makes people think exactly
        this. "It's easy for her and there's something terribly wrong with
        me." Neither is true.

        The Rule and Scriptures were meant for strugglers. They were written
        for real, average people, halt and lame, battle-scarred veterans like
        you and me, for people who have weathered life, but barely. Hey,
        there may be cookies and milk, but you'll probably have to get the
        plate yourself and brush aside a LOT of blood, sweat and tears to
        find one. Oh, and please drink the milk fast and take as much as you
        can... the fridge broke today.

        Patience is surely one of the most important fuels that perseverance
        runs on, but don't be surprised if it often is not very high octane!
        Neither should it surprise you if your engine is not a slant V-8, but
        rather a very cheap lawnmower that has trouble starting. Patience
        is ENDURANCE, not ease. It may, after years of struggle, confer a
        great peace and serenity, but it rarely, if ever, feels like that in
        the middle of things.

        Brother Patrick Creamer, OSB, of Saint Leo Abbey in Florida, taught
        me patience and perseverance. He was able to do so because he was so
        transparent about his own struggles. Many others tried to tell me how
        hard it was, but their lack of candor made me dismiss their warnings
        as tokenism. It certainly didn't seem to be hard for them. I couldn't
        believe them. Patrick, my late and beloved mentor, was so very different.

        Patrick entered the monastery in 1954, when he was 40, after a long
        career at sea. He missed being at sea so much (and for so long!) that
        it magnified many of the every day crosses of monastic life. Abbot
        Marion, who loved brothers and had a very tender spot for them, used
        to send Patrick to the beach for a weekend occasionally, in years
        when that sort of thing didn't often happen. Abbot Marion was wise enough
        to know he'd lose Patrick if he didn't get a salt air fix now and then.

        Even the beach trips were not enough alone. Patrick told me he was
        tempted to leave every single day for ten years. Patrick, when I
        lived with him, literally stayed packed with a hidden suitcase for
        years and boasted of his ability to be gone in an hour. As a novice,
        my heart used to be selfishly in my throat. I wanted him to go, if
        that was what he was supposed to do, but I really didn't want to lose
        him.

        I can also tell you that, during the worst
        of those years, Patrick helped scores of folks who came to him, because a
        transparently wounded person usually can. I can also tell you that
        Brother Patrick finally decided to stay: when he was 83 or so!! What a
        witness of hope that was to me, to others struggling like me.

        Please, let us all be given patience. But when we get it, however
        little at a time, let NONE of us be "perfect" TV Moms. Let us all be Patricks,
        let us show others how terribly hard, yet doable it can be.

        Patrick held forth from his infirmary room until his death
        at two weeks short of 90. A steady stream of visitors never waned.
        On the head of his bed and on the shaving mirror over his sink were
        two small notes, written in his own inimitable hand: "Lord, let me
        come to You." They broke my heart the first time I saw them. I still
        didn't want to lose him. But I know how right he was and how richly he
        deserves that loving embrace for which he so patiently waited.

        Love and prayers,
        Jerome LEO, OSB (again and again you'll see why I took the second
        name!)
        http://www.stmarysmonastery.org
        Petersham, MA



        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.