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Holy Rule for Apr. 6

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  • Jerry Lee
    +PAX Prayers, please, for Artie, who died, possible overdose, and for his family. Also for JRC, facing terrible personal struggles with no end in sight, and
    Message 1 of 3 , Apr 6 6:00 AM
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      +PAX

      Prayers, please, for Artie, who died, possible overdose, and for his family. Also for JRC, facing terrible personal struggles with no end in sight, and for Fr. Justin Monaghan, leg troubles that may require surgery. God's will is best. All is mercy and grace. God is never absent! Thanks so much! JL

      April 6, August 6, December 6
      Chapter 54: Whether a Monastic Should Receive Letters or Anything Else

      On no account shall a monastic be allowed
      to receive letters, blessed tokens or any little gift whatsoever
      from parents or anyone else,
      or from her sisters,
      or to give the same,
      without the Abbess's permission.
      But if anything is sent her even by her parents,
      let her not presume to take it
      before it has been shown to the Abbess.
      And it shall be in the Abbess's power to decide
      to whom it shall be given,
      if she allows it to be received;
      and the sister to whom it was sent should not be grieved,
      lest occasion be given to the devil.

      Should anyone presume to act otherwise,
      let her undergo the discipline of the Rule.

      REFLECTION

      At first glance, it might seem that there is little or nothing for
      Oblates in the world in this chapter. Not so! However, we shall have
      to look a bit deeper and pick about a bit...

      OK, remember the Abbot holds the place of Christ in the community.
      Now look again. The monastic is to rely on and look to no one but
      Christ, and to receive nothing more or less than what is needed,
      unless the Abbot, in Christ's place grants it. Remember the chapter
      about no monastic defending another, taking another into their
      special protection? One can easily see that this is covered here,
      too. No one should ever be able to say: "I am well-off and secure
      because Sister X. is my ally." Sister X. takes care of zero. God
      takes care of all!

      We can have such a distorted of view of our own income and property.
      We can think we have "earned" what we have and can therefore use it
      with impunity. Not so, and not Christian teaching, either. All goods
      are held with stewardship for the common good of all. No ownership is
      outright and exclusive, except for the sad ownership of our sins.

      No matter what our skills or gifts or how we have developed them, no
      matter if we were born with inherited comfort, no matter at all! ALL
      of that came from God, every bit. We are literally nothing at all but
      beneficiaries. All that we have or hope to have is nothing more or
      less than a windfall from God and His mercy.

      Now that is what this chapter is really all about, and it applies to
      everyone within the cloister and without. St. Benedict wanted to use
      these principles to focus his disciples on the truth that everything
      utterly everything comes from Christ, not from Sister X. or the lucky
      stroke of having wealthy family or friends elsewhere.

      Every Benedictine heart, beloveds, must examine itself by what we
      learn from this passage in the Holy Rule. Absolutely nothing
      whatsoever is ours, everything comes from God. Never take more than
      we need, never share less than we ought to share. Freely, fully have
      we all received all that we have from God. No less freely should our
      hearts let it go, spread it around to others.

      Make no mistake that there are at least two ways to react to the
      array of God's giftings. One is grateful largesse, a truly holy
      detachment from things as we honestly desire others to share in our
      blessings. (This is as true of the spiritual goods as it is of the
      material!)

      The other, a most pathetic one, is stinge and miserliness,
      a panicky, insecure fear that another might get more or have it
      easier than oneself. Nothing I can think of is more unbecoming to any
      who have received magnificently, yet we can all think of tragic
      examples of just such reactions. Guard very, very carefully against
      this last pitfall. I have seen it ensnare many a cloistered monastic,
      no one is exempt, and it will throw a dreadful cancer into one's very
      heart.

      Love and prayers,
      Jerome, OSB
      jeromeleo@...

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Jerry Lee
      +PAX Several have asked me about Lillibet, the sick hen, thanks be to God and your good prayers, she is all better- a little scar at the site of her wound lets
      Message 2 of 3 , Apr 6 8:14 AM
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        +PAX

        Several have asked me about Lillibet, the sick hen, thanks be to God and your good prayers, she is all better- a little scar at the site of her wound lets me still identify her (the chickens are all one breed and look very much alike,) as does the look in her eyes, something I got to know quite well as Br. Vincent and I were treating her each day for so long. Thanks to God and all who helped Him! Prayers, please, for Walter, 96, severely affected and depressed at the Pope's death, and for Richard, his son, who is worried about his Dad. Lord, help them as You know and will. All is mercy and grace. God is never absent. Alleluia! Thanks so much. JL

        April 6, August 6, December 6
        Chapter 54: Whether a Monastic Should Receive Letters or Anything Else

        On no account shall a monastic be allowed
        to receive letters, blessed tokens or any little gift whatsoever
        from parents or anyone else,
        or from her sisters,
        or to give the same,
        without the Abbess's permission.
        But if anything is sent her even by her parents,
        let her not presume to take it
        before it has been shown to the Abbess.
        And it shall be in the Abbess's power to decide
        to whom it shall be given,
        if she allows it to be received;
        and the sister to whom it was sent should not be grieved,
        lest occasion be given to the devil.

        Should anyone presume to act otherwise,
        let her undergo the discipline of the Rule.

        REFLECTION

        At first glance, it might seem that there is little or nothing for
        Oblates in the world in this chapter. Not so! However, we shall have
        to look a bit deeper and pick about a bit...

        OK, remember the Abbot holds the place of Christ in the community.
        Now look again. The monastic is to rely on and look to no one but
        Christ, and to receive nothing more or less than what is needed,
        unless the Abbot, in Christ's place grants it. Remember the chapter
        about no monastic defending another, taking another into their
        special protection? One can easily see that this is covered here,
        too. No one should ever be able to say: "I am well-off and secure
        because Sister X. is my ally." Sister X. takes care of zero. God
        takes care of all!

        We can have such a distorted of view of our own income and property.
        We can think we have "earned" what we have and can therefore use it
        with impunity. Not so, and not Christian teaching, either. All goods
        are held with stewardship for the common good of all. No ownership is
        outright and exclusive, except for the sad ownership of our sins.

        No matter what our skills or gifts or how we have developed them, no
        matter if we were born with inherited comfort, no matter at all! ALL
        of that came from God, every bit. We are literally nothing at all but
        beneficiaries. All that we have or hope to have is nothing more or
        less than a windfall from God and His mercy.

        Now that is what this chapter is really all about, and it applies to
        everyone within the cloister and without. St. Benedict wanted to use
        these principles to focus his disciples on the truth that everything
        utterly everything comes from Christ, not from Sister X. or the lucky
        stroke of having wealthy family or friends elsewhere.

        Every Benedictine heart, beloveds, must examine itself by what we
        learn from this passage in the Holy Rule. Absolutely nothing
        whatsoever is ours, everything comes from God. Never take more than
        we need, never share less than we ought to share. Freely, fully have
        we all received all that we have from God. No less freely should our
        hearts let it go, spread it around to others.

        Make no mistake that there are at least two ways to react to the
        array of God's giftings. One is grateful largesse, a truly holy
        detachment from things as we honestly desire others to share in our
        blessings. (This is as true of the spiritual goods as it is of the
        material!)

        The other, a most pathetic one, is stinge and miserliness,
        a panicky, insecure fear that another might get more or have it
        easier than oneself. Nothing I can think of is more unbecoming to any
        who have received magnificently, yet we can all think of tragic
        examples of just such reactions. Guard very, very carefully against
        this last pitfall. I have seen it ensnare many a cloistered monastic,
        no one is exempt, and it will throw a dreadful cancer into one's very
        heart.

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

        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Jerry Lee
        +PAX Continued prayers, please, for Pauline, in ICU after a procedure to relieve fluid pressure on her brain, but responding well to family visitors, also for
        Message 3 of 3 , Apr 6 6:09 AM
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          +PAX

          Continued prayers, please, for Pauline, in ICU after a procedure to relieve fluid pressure on her brain, but responding well to family visitors, also for Joy, opening her eyes on her own, recognizing visitors and seems to be improving. Deo gratias for both and pray on!

          Prayers (especially the rosary or Divine Mercy chaplet)for Jean's Mom, 95, apparently now being kept comfortable while waiting for God to take her home, and for all her family. Prayers, too, for a life just beginning; Annalise was born to Christie and Mike, and joyous young family now. We had prayed for her Mom during pregnancy, so Deo gratias for all! Prayers for Tim, 11, unexplained migraine headaches, waiting for MRI results, for his uncle, Jim, who asked, and for all his family. Prayers for Francisco, caught in a double bind regarding getting ordained and getting immigration papers, that all be resolved according to God's will. Prayers for Tom and Danielle and one of their children who is having a tough time right now.

          Prayers for the happy death and eternal rest of Gene Pitney, 65, a singer who entertained many of us, especially those 50 somethings in our midst. He was found dead in his hotel room. Prayers for his wife and 3 sons and all who mourn him.

          Prayers of joy for the Cistercian nuns of Tautra, in Norway, their house has just achieved independence, and for the founding Motherhouse, Our Lady of the Mississippi Abbey, about to elect a new Abbess. 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

          April 6, August 6, December 6
          Chapter 54: Whether a Monastic Should Receive Letters or Anything Else

          On no account shall a monastic be allowed
          to receive letters, blessed tokens or any little gift whatsoever
          from parents or anyone else,
          or from her sisters,
          or to give the same,
          without the Abbess's permission.
          But if anything is sent her even by her parents,
          let her not presume to take it
          before it has been shown to the Abbess.
          And it shall be in the Abbess's power to decide
          to whom it shall be given,
          if she allows it to be received;
          and the sister to whom it was sent should not be grieved,
          lest occasion be given to the devil.

          Should anyone presume to act otherwise,
          let her undergo the discipline of the Rule.

          REFLECTION

          At first glance, it might seem that there is little or nothing for
          Oblates in the world in this chapter. Not so! However, we shall have
          to look a bit deeper and pick about a bit...

          OK, remember the Abbot holds the place of Christ in the community.
          Now look again. The monastic is to rely on and look to no one but
          Christ, and to receive nothing more or less than what is needed,
          unless the Abbot, in Christ's place grants it. Remember the chapter
          about no monastic defending another, taking another into their
          special protection? One can easily see that this is covered here,
          too. No one should ever be able to say: "I am well-off and secure
          because Sister X. is my ally." Sister X. takes care of zero. God
          takes care of all!

          We can have such a distorted of view of our own income and property.
          We can think we have "earned" what we have and can therefore use it
          with impunity. Not so, and not Christian teaching, either. All goods
          are held with stewardship for the common good of all. No ownership is
          outright and exclusive, except for the sad ownership of our sins.

          No matter what our skills or gifts or how we have developed them, no
          matter if we were born with inherited comfort, no matter at all! ALL
          of that came from God, every bit. We are literally nothing at all but
          beneficiaries. All that we have or hope to have is nothing more or
          less than a windfall from God and His mercy.

          Now that is what this chapter is really all about, and it applies to
          everyone within the cloister and without. St. Benedict wanted to use
          these principles to focus his disciples on the truth that everything,
          utterly everything comes from Christ, not from Sister X. or the lucky
          stroke of having wealthy family or friends elsewhere, or even from
          our own work. The job or business itself came from God, so did the
          strength to be productive in any way.

          Every Benedictine heart, beloveds, must examine itself by what we
          learn from this passage in the Holy Rule. Absolutely nothing
          whatsoever is ours, everything comes from God. Never take more than
          we need, never share less than we ought to share. Freely, fully have
          we all received all that we have from God. No less freely should our
          hearts let it go, spread it around to others.

          Make no mistake that there are at least two ways to react to the
          array of God's giftings. One is grateful largesse, a truly holy
          detachment from things as we honestly desire others to share in our
          blessings. (This is as true of the spiritual goods as it is of the
          material!)

          The other, a most pathetic one, is stinge and miserliness,
          a panicky, insecure fear that another might get more or have it
          easier than oneself. Nothing I can think of is more unbecoming to any
          who have received magnificently, yet we can all think of tragic
          examples of just such reactions. Guard very, very carefully against
          this last pitfall. I have seen it ensnare many a cloistered monastic,
          no one is exempt, and it will throw a dreadful cancer into one's very
          heart.

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

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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