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

Holy Rule for Mar. 1

Expand Messages
  • russophile2002
    +PAX Prayers, please, for Alexandra Piatek, who has died, and for those who mourn her, also for Charlene, carpal tunnel sundrome in both hands and Janeel,
    Message 1 of 4 , Mar 1, 2004
    • 0 Attachment
      +PAX

      Prayers, please, for Alexandra Piatek, who has died, and for those
      who mourn her, also for Charlene, carpal tunnel sundrome in both
      hands and Janeel, diabetes, asthma and other problems. Prayers, too,
      for J., who is having a hard time, not feeling the presence of God in
      her life just now. God's will is best. All is mercy and grace. Thanks
      so much. JL

      March 1, July 1, October 31
      Chapter 24: What the Measure of Excommunication Should Be

      The measure of excommunication or of chastisement
      should correspond to the degree of fault,
      which degree is estimated by the judgment of the Abbess.


      If a sister is found guilty of lighter faults,
      let her be excluded from the common table.
      Now the program for one deprived of the company of the table
      shall be as follows:
      In the oratory she shall intone neither Psalm nor antiphon
      nor shall she recite a lesson
      until she has made satisfaction;
      in the refectory she shall take her food alone
      after the community meal,
      so that if they eat at the sixth hour, for instance,
      that sister shall eat at the ninth,
      while if they eat at the ninth hour
      she shall eat in the evening,
      until by a suitable satisfaction she obtains pardon.

      REFLECTION

      Let's face it, St. Benedict has a lot to say about excommunication- a
      clumsy term, perhaps, because people often assume it means
      excommunication from the Church, which is the only sense of the word
      we commonly have today. It does not, of course mean that, just a
      punishment of exclusion from certain community functions.

      Let's face something else, at least in this chapter. Fasting an extra
      three hours might not be lovely, but no intoning in choir? What bad
      news! Gosh... Even many of us who CAN sing would look at that as a
      nice break!

      And eating alone? Well, the extra fast was a drag, but I
      sure missed that droning reader and the tedious book we've been
      reading. What awful luck!

      See the difference in perception a millennium or so can make? That
      may be a large part of why the penal code is not followed today: some
      of its punishments simply make little sense to modern monastics, some
      seem mean, and others (as above,) seem like downright vacations.

      The rest of this applies with great ease to family situations,
      marital situations and the workplace. Something must be gleaned from
      all this legislation for punishment: the one at fault must be told
      when something is wrong. That, after all, is the only reason for
      punishment, to be a wake up call to the less than brilliant.

      Unfortunately, the monastic hatred of personal confrontation endemic
      in our ranks assumes (because it is easiest to do so,) sufficient
      brilliance for all to sooner or later figure out that they are amiss.
      It just ain't so, folks, sorry! Things fester when they go ignored
      for years. Things that someone should have dealt with gently, but
      firmly and even summarily, in formation or childhood, torture the
      family in later years.

      Look, it is hard, VERY hard, to confront a predictably stubborn or
      difficult child or monastic or spouse or employee on a bad day. It's
      easy to see why one would rather not do so. But the Holy Rule asks
      many things that are difficult of us, and this one is unquestionably
      for the good of all, both the offender and the offended. The false
      charity, (really just cowardice in polite drag,) that omits to make
      these difficult corrections goes a long way to making everyone's life
      hellish in the future.

      Also, in workplace especially, bear in mind that the authority figure
      here is the abbot, not the rank and file. One dare not assume all
      those prerogatives as a peer and equal. Fraternal correction will get
      a chapter of its own later on, but it is not a mantle to be assumed
      lightly. We must beware of the other extreme: becoming universal
      policing agents for all and sundry. A tiny spark of Gestapo flickers
      in many, if not most human hearts. Do nothing to fan the flame!

      Love and prayers,
      Jerome, OSB
      http://www.stmarysmonastery.org
      jeromeleo@...
      Petersham, MA
    • Jerry Lee
      +PAX You will receive two readings today, as I forgot last year was a leap year and missed this first one as a result. Some very important prayer issues today,
      Message 2 of 4 , Mar 1, 2005
      • 0 Attachment
        +PAX

        You will receive two readings today, as I forgot last year was a leap year and missed this first one as a result.

        Some very important prayer issues today, the good news first: Deo gratias! Rachel gave birth by C-section to Sophia, a lovely daughter. Delivery was a bit iffy, so both remain in the hospital, but prayers of thanksgiving are due. Deo gratias, also for Michael- we prayed for him yesterday and he has been able to keep his old job, even though his salary was cut. Still cause for rejoicing and thanks.

        A terribly needy family here: Maureen and Steve have five children. Julia, six, is severely disabled by a genetic condition, in constant discomfort and now in end stage renal failure. Another child, 18 months, has kidney dysfunction, but is otherwise all right. Maureen, 39, recently was found to be riddled with cancer, probably ovarian, and her prognosis is very poor. Prayers for all, and especially for Steve, that grace and faith and strength pull him through this. Also, prayers for Doreas, for whom we prayed, she has gone to God, and for Joe who has also died. Eternal rest! Lord, help them as you know and will. God's will is best. All is mercy and grace. God is never absent. Alleluia! Thanks so much. JL

        February 29, June 30, October 30
        Chapter 23: On Excommunication for Faults
        (If there is no 29th of Feburary, append this entry to the previous.)

        If a brother is found to be obstinate,
        or disobedient, or proud, or murmuring,
        or habitually transgressing the Holy Rule in any point
        and contemptuous of the orders of his seniors,
        the latter shall admonish him secretly a first and a second time,
        as Our Lord commands (Matt. 18:15).
        If he fails to amend,
        let him be given a public rebuke in front of the whole community.
        But if even then he does not reform,
        let him be placed under excommunication,
        provided that he understands the seriousness of that penalty;
        if he is perverse, however,
        let him undergo corporal punishment.

        REFLECTION

        It is sad, indeed, that a chapter like this ever had to be written,
        sad in St. Benedict's time, sad in our own. How little human beings
        change in some ways! Why on earth would anyone come to a monastic
        struggle with an attitude that says: "I know better. I'm right and
        they're wrong."? Why would anyone persist in staying with such an
        attitude?

        Because they are blind. It's another favorite trick of Satan. Blurred
        or clouded assessments of the reality at hand are his forte.
        Especially when these phony lenses get applied to religious matters,
        the obstinacy and self-righteousness can go to extremes.

        Look, beloveds, every single one of us, from the newest Oblate
        candidate to the Abbot Primate, came to the monastic life, to the
        Holy Rule, to be CHANGED. We came to learn, not to teach. We came to
        reform ourselves, not the monastery. We not only arrived with that
        attitude, we must keep it all of our lives. We came to surrender, not
        to demand.

        That's why this chapter is both so very sad and so very important.
        The monastic at any point in life who has renounced that attitude of
        discipleship has abandoned the struggle. We must hope it is a
        temporary abandonment, because it can be fatal to one's vocation. It
        can undo all the good work we have behind us. It can delude us into
        thinking we are persevering when we have actually long ago quit.

        Superiors and community (or family!) can be a big reality check here
        and that is what this chapter seeks to provide. Gentleness, love and
        tact are in order, but something must be done. One must be very
        careful at such times not to lord it over another smugly. But one
        must also be very careful not to do nothing at all, especially if one
        is in authority. The risk to the falling member is too great to
        ignore.

        If, alas, you find yourself to be that falling member, for heaven's
        sake (quite literally!) LISTEN. That is such a Benedictine trait, our
        Holy Rule begins with that word. If others are that upset, there may
        well be something wrong. Don't deny it. Check it out with all the
        humility you can muster, but be very aware that your humility may
        well be the thing that is currently terribly impaired. Be as honest
        as truthful as you can. Try, try with all your strength, to let
        yourself always be changed for the good, and strive to see that good,
        even when it is hard.

        If you are one of the lucky ones not in this leaking boat, be deeply
        humbled and grateful to God. Pray every day for all of those in the
        Order, the Church, the world, who are sinking. They need our prayers
        badly. Think how different the Titanic might have been with enough
        lifeboats...

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

        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Jerry Lee
        +PAX Now that we have both Eastern Christians (whose Lent began on Monday,) and Western Christian on board, a holy and grace-filled and blessed Lent to all!
        Message 3 of 4 , Mar 1, 2006
        • 0 Attachment
          +PAX

          Now that we have both Eastern Christians (whose Lent began on Monday,) and Western Christian on board, a holy and grace-filled and blessed Lent to all! May we all move closer to the Lord in these 40 days.

          Prayers, please, for Val, father of the missing woman, Jessie in Alaska, for whom we have been praying. Authorities called off the search, but locals are continuing as volunteers. Val is recovering from a near fatal infection and the effect of all this stress could be very risky. Prayers of thanks and Deo gratias for Alix's Father, who is home from the hospital and recovering slowly. She thanks all for their prayers!

          Prayers for Alan, who is very kind to our community here and for his elderly Mother, Lucille, who had a very threatening bout with pneumonia and ICU, but seems to be doing better slowly. Prayers, too, for Barbara, Mother of our Sister Julian. She is elderly and spry, but a recent flu has really wiped her out, she has been so very sick. Prayers for them both and for all the doctors who care for us and those we love. Lord, help us 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 1, July 1, October 31
          Chapter 24: What the Measure of Excommunication Should Be

          The measure of excommunication or of chastisement
          should correspond to the degree of fault,
          which degree is estimated by the judgment of the Abbess.


          If a sister is found guilty of lighter faults,
          let her be excluded from the common table.
          Now the program for one deprived of the company of the table
          shall be as follows:
          In the oratory she shall intone neither Psalm nor antiphon
          nor shall she recite a lesson
          until she has made satisfaction;
          in the refectory she shall take her food alone
          after the community meal,
          so that if they eat at the sixth hour, for instance,
          that sister shall eat at the ninth,
          while if they eat at the ninth hour
          she shall eat in the evening,
          until by a suitable satisfaction she obtains pardon.

          REFLECTION

          Let's face it, St. Benedict has a lot to say about excommunication- a
          clumsy term, perhaps, because people often assume it means
          excommunication from the Church, which is the only sense of the word
          we commonly have today. It does not, of course mean that, just a
          punishment of exclusion from certain community functions.

          Let's face something else, at least in this chapter. Fasting an extra
          three hours might not be lovely, but no intoning in choir? What bad
          news! Gosh... Even many of us who CAN sing would look at that as a
          nice break!

          And eating alone? Well, the extra fast was a drag, but I
          sure missed that droning reader and the tedious book we've been
          reading. What awful luck!

          See the difference in perception a millennium or so can make? That
          may be a large part of why the penal code is not followed today: some
          of its punishments simply make little sense to modern monastics, some
          seem mean, and others (as above,) seem like downright vacations.

          The rest of this applies with great ease to family situations,
          marital situations and the workplace. Something must be gleaned from
          all this legislation for punishment: the one at fault must be told
          when something is wrong. That, after all, is the only reason for
          punishment, to be a wake up call to the less than brilliant.

          Unfortunately, the monastic hatred of personal confrontation endemic
          in our ranks assumes (because it is easiest to do so,) sufficient
          brilliance for all to sooner or later figure out that they are amiss.
          It just ain't so, folks, sorry! Things fester when they go ignored
          for years. Things that someone should have dealt with gently, but
          firmly and even summarily, in formation or childhood, torture the
          family in later years.

          Look, it is hard, VERY hard, to confront a predictably stubborn or
          difficult child or monastic or spouse or employee on a bad day. It's
          easy to see why one would rather not do so. But the Holy Rule asks
          many things that are difficult of us, and this one is unquestionably
          for the good of all, both the offender and the offended. The false
          charity, (really just cowardice in polite drag,) that omits to make
          these difficult corrections goes a long way to making everyone's life
          hellish in the future.

          Also, in workplace especially, bear in mind that the authority figure
          here is the abbot, not the rank and file. One dare not assume all
          those prerogatives as a peer and equal. Fraternal correction will get
          a chapter of its own later on, but it is not a mantle to be assumed
          lightly. We must beware of the other extreme: becoming universal
          policing agents for all and sundry. A tiny spark of Gestapo flickers
          in many, if not most human hearts. Do nothing to fan the flame!

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

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Brjeromeleo@aol.com
          +PAX Prayers for Mark, who stepped on a land mine Saturday in Iraq and had two feet blown off, but survived unscathed otherwise. Deo gratias that his life
          Message 4 of 4 , Feb 28, 2007
          • 0 Attachment
            +PAX

            Prayers for Mark, who stepped on a land mine Saturday in Iraq and had two
            feet blown off, but survived unscathed otherwise. Deo gratias that his life was
            spared. It appears from his story that intercession to St. Joseph has had a
            lot to do with protecting him. His Mom, Debbie is so grateful. We had prayed
            for Mark when he was deployed earlier. Please continue to pray for him as he
            begins the long road of recovery and rehab. He still has so many hurdles, but
            God is so good. Prayers, too, for Debbie, for all their family, and for all
            those who care for Mark and all of us medically or spiritually.

            Prayers of thanks and Deo gratias for C., a very promising job offer!
            Prayers for the team and retreatants of a young adult retreat in Texas, a Bayou
            Awakening, rather like a Cursillo retreat, held later this month. May God fill
            them all with his Holy Spirit and blessings. 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 1, July 1, October 31
            Chapter 24: What the Measure of Excommunication Should Be

            The measure of excommunication or of chastisement
            should correspond to the degree of fault,
            which degree is estimated by the judgment of the Abbess.


            If a sister is found guilty of lighter faults,
            let her be excluded from the common table.
            Now the program for one deprived of the company of the table
            shall be as follows:
            In the oratory she shall intone neither Psalm nor antiphon
            nor shall she recite a lesson
            until she has made satisfaction;
            in the refectory she shall take her food alone
            after the community meal,
            so that if they eat at the sixth hour, for instance,
            that sister shall eat at the ninth,
            while if they eat at the ninth hour
            she shall eat in the evening,
            until by a suitable satisfaction she obtains pardon.

            REFLECTION

            Let's face it, St. Benedict has a lot to say about excommunication- a
            clumsy term, perhaps, because people often assume it means
            excommunication from the Church, which is the only sense of the word
            we commonly have today. It does not, of course mean that, just a
            punishment of exclusion from certain community functions.

            Let's face something else, at least in this chapter. Fasting an extra
            three hours might not be lovely, but no intoning in choir? What bad
            news! Gosh... Even many of us who CAN sing would look at that as a
            nice break!

            And eating alone? Well, the extra fast was a drag, but I
            sure missed that droning reader and the tedious book we've been
            reading. What awful luck!

            See the difference in perception a millennium or so can make? That
            may be a large part of why the penal code is not followed today: some
            of its punishments simply make little sense to modern monastics, some
            seem mean, and others (as above,) seem like downright vacations.

            The rest of this applies with great ease to family situations,
            marital situations and the workplace. Something must be gleaned from
            all this legislation for punishment: the one at fault must be told
            when something is wrong. That, after all, is the only reason for
            punishment, to be a wake up call to the less than brilliant.

            Unfortunately, the monastic hatred of personal confrontation endemic
            in our ranks assumes (because it is easiest to do so,) sufficient
            brilliance for all to sooner or later figure out that they are amiss.
            It just ain't so, folks, sorry! Things fester when they go ignored
            for years. Things that someone should have dealt with gently, but
            firmly and even summarily, in formation or childhood, torture the
            family in later years.

            Look, it is hard, VERY hard, to confront a predictably stubborn or
            difficult child or monastic or spouse or employee on a bad day. It's
            easy to see why one would rather not do so. But the Holy Rule asks
            many things that are difficult of us, and this one is unquestionably
            for the good of all, both the offender and the offended. The false
            charity, (really just cowardice in polite drag,) that omits to make
            these difficult corrections goes a long way to making everyone's life
            hellish in the future.

            Also, in workplace especially, bear in mind that the authority figure
            here is the abbot, not the rank and file. One dare not assume all
            those prerogatives as a peer and equal. Fraternal correction will get
            a chapter of its own later on, but it is not a mantle to be assumed
            lightly. We must beware of the other extreme: becoming universal
            policing agents for all and sundry. A tiny spark of Gestapo flickers
            in many, if not most human hearts. Do nothing to fan the flame!

            Love and prayers,
            Jerome, OSB
            _http://www.stmarysmonastery.org_ (http://www.stmarysmonastery.org/)
            _brjeromeleo@..._ (mailto:brjeromeleo@...)
            Petersham, MA

            <BR><BR><BR>**************************************<BR> AOL now offers free
            email to everyone. Find out more about what's free from AOL at
            http://www.aol.com.


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