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Holy Rule for Nov. 18

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  • Jerry Lee
    +PAX Prayers, please, for Siobahn and her injured dog, Lala. Lala has a lot of healing and surgery on her plate, plus the chance of gangrene and leg
    Message 1 of 4 , Nov 18, 2004
      +PAX

      Prayers, please, for Siobahn and her injured dog, Lala. Lala has a lot of healing and surgery on her plate, plus the chance of gangrene and leg amputation, and Siobhan is being a VERY faithful nurse. Prayers, too, for Brenda, eye surgery to repair bleeding, and for Kevin and his parents. His Mom was recently diagnosed with Parkinson's and his Dad, Don, just had a massive cerebral hemorrhage. While doing surgery for that, the doctor found a brain tumor, too. God's will is best. ALl is mercy and grace. God is never absent. Alleluia! Thanks so much. JL

      March 19, July 19, November 18
      Chapter 40: On the Measure of Drink

      "Everyone has her own gift from God,
      one in this way and another in that" (1 Cor. 7:7).
      It is therefore with some misgiving
      that we regulate the measure of others' sustenance.
      Nevertheless, keeping in view the needs of the weak,
      we believe that a hemina of wine a day is sufficient for each.
      But those to whom God gives the strength to abstain
      should know that they will receive a special reward.


      If the circumstances of the place,
      or the work
      or the heat of summer
      require a greater measure,
      the superior shall use her judgment in the matter,
      taking care always
      that there be no occasion for surfeit or drunkenness.
      We read
      it is true,
      that wine is by no means a drink for monastics;
      but since the monastics of our day cannot be persuaded of this
      let us at least agree to drink sparingly and not to satiety,
      because "wine makes even the wise fall away" (Eccles. 19:2).


      But where the circumstances of the place are such
      that not even the measure prescribed above can be supplied,
      but much less or none at all,
      let those who live there bless God and not murmur.
      Above all things do we give this admonition,
      that they abstain from murmuring.

      REFLECTION

      "Above all...abstain from murmuring." The murmuring here (and
      everywhere it is mentioned in the Holy Rule,) is mean-spirited
      griping about people or conditions. Never for an instant think that
      Benedictine standards require one to be blind to real problems.
      Abbots can be removed and have been. The process is neither simple
      nor a great deal of fun, but it has been done. Real evils ought to be
      addressed and usually are.

      It's hard to write about this, because a certain unwritten law (well,
      written in the hearts of monastics!) governs what is and isn't
      murmuring. It's an intuitive sort of principle that one learns by
      living among and observing other monastics. All I can say is that the
      Benedictines I have known and know today do NOT blindly accept
      nonsense at any price.

      There are healthy levels of opposition and resistance in a
      healthy community, but their boundaries most not be violated. In
      fact, any superior or community which mercilessly destroys ALL
      disagreement or opposition is in serious danger. Part of community's
      efficacy is that vastly different people live together in peace.

      Maybe peace is the key to assessing a lot of murmuring. The meanest,
      most hateful monk I ever knew- now dead and buried some years in the
      Florida hills- had a life of nearly non-stop murmuring. Everything
      was wrong, everyone was wrong and he reported such things with an eye
      to harm. I heard another monk refer to this guy as "diabolical" and
      that was not an adjective he used lightly.

      Virtually nothing and no one measured up to Br. X's standards.
      He was hell to live with and I feared him when I was a novice. But
      there is the catch: he was hell to live with, even for himself. His
      self-hatred was masked by murmuring, by putting forth to the world
      high standards which he himself could in no way match and frankly,
      didn't. He was filled with anger and pain and sought to make the
      world around him match. What a convoluted mess!

      Listen up, m'dears, I cannot know what another's pain is or how they
      should seek help for it, but I do know that the Benedictine way is
      NOT to pass that on and not to stand idly by and watch another do so.
      Horrible to say, it took me years to get over Br. X's meanness. When
      I came here it took me years to learn that I no longer had to cover
      my flanks or look over my shoulder: no one here is mean, nor would we
      accept someone who was.

      Poor Br. X, I often pray for his tortured soul. However, it was not
      his fault alone. There was an Abbot who listened, there were monks
      who did, too. A united refusal to listen to such poison might have
      helped him, or it might have actually driven him out, but in fact
      that didn't happen. We all bear a two-sided obligation to mean
      murmuring: don't start it, and don't listen to it. Venom doesn't have
      any effect if it doesn't get in the bloodstream. See to it that you
      never help it on it's way.



      Love and prayers,

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

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Jerry Lee
      +PAX Prayers, please, for Kathleen, under-employed without full-time work for a long time now, without healthcare benefits and seriously financially
      Message 2 of 4 , Nov 18, 2005
        +PAX

        Prayers, please, for Kathleen, under-employed without full-time work for a long time now, without healthcare benefits and seriously financially threatened. She has an interview for a full-time position. God's will be done! Prayers for Tracey, colonoscopy to check out worrisome symptoms, and for Steve, recurrent leukemia, Jim, his brother who will give him a bone marrow transplant and for all his worried family. Glen, 89, for whom we prayed, has died. Prayers for his happy death and eternal rest, and for Bernadine, his wife of 67 years and all his family. Prayers for the happy death and eternal rest of Kurt, a college student injured terribly in a car accident, he died two days ago, also for all his family and his girlfriend, Samantha. Lord, help them 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 19, July 19, November 18
        Chapter 40: On the Measure of Drink

        "Everyone has her own gift from God,
        one in this way and another in that" (1 Cor. 7:7).
        It is therefore with some misgiving
        that we regulate the measure of others' sustenance.
        Nevertheless, keeping in view the needs of the weak,
        we believe that a hemina of wine a day is sufficient for each.
        But those to whom God gives the strength to abstain
        should know that they will receive a special reward.


        If the circumstances of the place,
        or the work
        or the heat of summer
        require a greater measure,
        the superior shall use her judgment in the matter,
        taking care always
        that there be no occasion for surfeit or drunkenness.
        We read
        it is true,
        that wine is by no means a drink for monastics;
        but since the monastics of our day cannot be persuaded of this
        let us at least agree to drink sparingly and not to satiety,
        because "wine makes even the wise fall away" (Eccles. 19:2).


        But where the circumstances of the place are such
        that not even the measure prescribed above can be supplied,
        but much less or none at all,
        let those who live there bless God and not murmur.
        Above all things do we give this admonition,
        that they abstain from murmuring.

        REFLECTION

        "Above all...abstain from murmuring." The murmuring here (and
        everywhere it is mentioned in the Holy Rule,) is mean-spirited
        griping about people or conditions. Never for an instant think that
        Benedictine standards require one to be blind to real problems.
        Abbots can be removed and have been. The process is neither simple
        nor a great deal of fun, but it has been done. Real evils ought to be
        addressed and usually are.

        It's hard to write about this, because a certain unwritten law (well,
        written in the hearts of monastics!) governs what is and isn't
        murmuring. It's an intuitive sort of principle that one learns by
        living among and observing other monastics. All I can say is that the
        Benedictines I have known and know today do NOT blindly accept
        any and all nonsense at any price. I can also affirm that even the
        intuitive sense about what is or isn't murmuring is not infallible! A lot
        of self can get tied up in such assessments.

        There are healthy levels of opposition and resistance in a
        healthy community, but their boundaries most not be violated. In
        fact, any superior or community which mercilessly destroys ALL
        disagreement or opposition is in serious danger. Part of community's
        efficacy is that vastly different people live together in peace.

        Maybe peace is the key to assessing a lot of murmuring. The meanest,
        most hateful monk I ever knew- now dead and buried some years in the
        Florida hills- had a life of nearly non-stop murmuring. Everything
        was wrong, everyone was wrong and he reported such things with an eye
        to harm. I heard another monk refer to this guy as "diabolical" and
        that was not an adjective he used lightly.

        Virtually nothing and no one measured up to Br. X's standards.
        He was hell to live with and I feared him when I was a novice. But
        there is the catch: he was hell to live with, even for himself. His
        self-hatred was masked by murmuring, by putting forth to the world
        high standards which he himself could in no way match and frankly,
        didn't. He was filled with anger and pain and sought to make the
        world around him match. What a convoluted mess!

        Listen up, m'dears, I cannot know what another's pain is or how they
        should seek help for it, but I do know that the Benedictine way is
        NOT to pass that on and not to stand idly by and watch another do so.
        Horrible to say, it took me years to get over Br. X's meanness. When
        I came here it took me years to learn that I no longer had to cover
        my flanks or look over my shoulder: no one here is mean, nor would we
        accept someone who was.

        Poor Br. X, I often pray for his tortured soul. However, it was not
        his fault alone. There was an Abbot who listened, there were monks
        who did, too. A united refusal to listen to such poison might have
        helped him, or it might have actually driven him out, but in fact neither
        of those things happened. We all bear a two-sided obligation to mean
        murmuring: don't start it, and don't listen to it. Venom doesn't have
        any effect if it doesn't get in the bloodstream. See to it that you
        never help it on it's way.



        Love and prayers,

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

        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Br. Jerome Leo
        +PAX Prayers for both our Communities here in Petersham, we began our retreat this morning, and for our retreatmaster, Fr. Bill Russell. Prayers of great Deo
        Message 3 of 4 , Nov 17, 2007
          +PAX

          Prayers for both our Communities here in Petersham, we began our retreat this morning, and for our retreatmaster, Fr. Bill Russell.

          Prayers of great Deo gratias and thanks for James Francis Bernard, celebrating 54 years as an Oblate this month. Ad multos annos, many more!

          Prayers for the spiritual, mental and physical health of the following, for all their loved ones and all who care for them:

          Basil, facing decisions on dialysis in the near future.

          James' niece, 40's, Hodgkins disease, liver and kidney functions impaired now and spots on her lung.

          Shaheem, greatly in need of medical care.

          Jane, trying to embrace God's will, and continued prayers for her Dad, please.

          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 19, July 19, November 18
          Chapter 40: On the Measure of Drink

          "Everyone has her own gift from God,
          one in this way and another in that" (1 Cor. 7:7).
          It is therefore with some misgiving
          that we regulate the measure of others' sustenance.
          Nevertheless, keeping in view the needs of the weak,
          we believe that a hemina of wine a day is sufficient for each.
          But those to whom God gives the strength to abstain
          should know that they will receive a special reward.


          If the circumstances of the place,
          or the work
          or the heat of summer
          require a greater measure,
          the superior shall use her judgment in the matter,
          taking care always
          that there be no occasion for surfeit or drunkenness.
          We read
          it is true,
          that wine is by no means a drink for monastics;
          but since the monastics of our day cannot be persuaded of this
          let us at least agree to drink sparingly and not to satiety,
          because "wine makes even the wise fall away" (Eccles. 19:2).


          But where the circumstances of the place are such
          that not even the measure prescribed above can be supplied,
          but much less or none at all,
          let those who live there bless God and not murmur.
          Above all things do we give this admonition,
          that they abstain from murmuring.

          REFLECTION

          "Above all...abstain from murmuring." The murmuring here (and
          everywhere it is mentioned in the Holy Rule,) is mean-spirited
          griping about people or conditions. Never for an instant think that
          Benedictine standards require one to be blind to real problems.
          Abbots can be removed and have been. The process is neither simple
          nor a great deal of fun, but it has been done. Real evils ought to be
          addressed and usually are.

          It's hard to write about this, because a certain unwritten law (well,
          written in the hearts of monastics!) governs what is and isn't
          murmuring. It's an intuitive sort of principle that one learns by
          living among and observing other monastics. All I can say is that the
          Benedictines I have known and know today do NOT blindly accept
          any and all nonsense at any price. I can also affirm that even the
          intuitive sense about what is or isn't murmuring is not infallible!
          A lot of self can get tied up in such assessments.

          There are healthy levels of opposition and resistance in a
          healthy community, but their boundaries most not be violated. In
          fact, any superior or community which mercilessly destroys ALL
          disagreement or opposition is in serious danger. Part of community's
          efficacy is that vastly different people live together in peace.

          Maybe peace is the key to assessing a lot of murmuring. The meanest,
          most hateful monk I ever knew- now dead and buried some years in the
          Florida hills- had a life of nearly non-stop murmuring. Everything
          was wrong, everyone was wrong and he reported such things with an eye
          to harm. I heard another monk refer to this guy as "diabolical" and
          that was not an adjective he used lightly.

          Virtually nothing and no one measured up to Br. X's standards.
          He was hell to live with and I feared him when I was a novice. But
          there is the catch: he was hell to live with, even for himself. His
          self-hatred was masked by murmuring, by putting forth to the world
          high standards which he himself could in no way match and frankly,
          didn't. He was filled with anger and pain and sought to make the
          world around him match. What a convoluted mess!

          Listen up, m'dears, I cannot know what another's pain is or how they
          should seek help for it, but I do know that the Benedictine way is
          NOT to pass that on and not to stand idly by and watch another do so.
          Horrible to say, it took me years to get over Br. X's meanness. When
          I came here it took me years to learn that I no longer had to cover
          my flanks or look over my shoulder: no one here is mean, nor would we
          accept someone who was.

          Poor Br. X, I often pray for his tortured soul. However, it was not
          his fault alone. There was an Abbot who listened, there were monks
          who did, too. A united refusal to listen to such poison might have
          helped him, or it might have actually driven him out, but in fact
          neither of those things happened. We all bear a two-sided obligation to mean
          murmuring: don't start it, and don't listen to it. Venom doesn't have
          any effect if it doesn't get in the bloodstream. See to it that you
          never help it on it's way.



          Love and prayers,

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

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Br. Jerome Leo
          +PAX Please pray for the eternal rest of Mary, Rosemary s grandmother. And please pray for all in their family, especially her son, Edward, who feels he no
          Message 4 of 4 , Nov 17, 2016

            +PAX

             

            Please pray for the eternal rest of Mary, Rosemary’s grandmother. And please pray for all in their family, especially her son, Edward, who feels he no longer has anyone to talk to and for Rosemary.

             

            Deo gratias, Elaine has been offered the job we have been praying about, full time and benefits.

             

            Continued prayers for the health of Hannah.

             

            Prayers for G., Magdalen and one other person involved in a very hurtful mess on social media, prayers for reconciliation and peace on all sides.

             

            Prayers for all the Holy Souls, remember all of November is dedicated to prayer for them.

             

            Prayers, please, for the eternal rest of Br. Finbar's Dad, on the anniversary of his death. Prayers for Br. Finbar and all his family and all who mourn his Dad.

             

            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 19, July 19, November 18
            Chapter 40: On the Measure of Drink

            "Everyone has her own gift from God,
            one in this way and another in that" (1 Cor. 7:7).
            It is therefore with some misgiving
            that we regulate the measure of others' sustenance.
            Nevertheless, keeping in view the needs of the weak,
            we believe that a hemina of wine a day is sufficient for each.
            But those to whom God gives the strength to abstain
            should know that they will receive a special reward.


            If the circumstances of the place,
            or the work
            or the heat of summer
            require a greater measure,
            the superior shall use her judgment in the matter,
            taking care always
            that there be no occasion for surfeit or drunkenness.
            We read
            it is true,
            that wine is by no means a drink for monastics;
            but since the monastics of our day cannot be persuaded of this
            let us at least agree to drink sparingly and not to satiety,
            because "wine makes even the wise fall away" (Eccles. 19:2).


            But where the circumstances of the place are such
            that not even the measure prescribed above can be supplied,
            but much less or none at all,
            let those who live there bless God and not murmur.
            Above all things do we give this admonition,
            that they abstain from murmuring.

            REFLECTION

            Two things stand out here: the gentleness of St. Benedict and the
            necessity of praising God in every circumstance.

            St. Benedict admits he is hesitant to set forth a principle of how
            much others he will never know might need for their sustenance. He
            may not have seen just how many other people and lands and times he
            was writing for, but he did see enough to be uneasy. This is not the
            voice or tone of a relentless dictator whose undue hunger for control
            finds his finger in every pie. Gentleness and humility are two of the finest
            gems in any crown of authority.

            Every bit as important, but hidden and even lost amidst worries about
            how much a hemina is in metric, is the wonderful injunction that
            those who lack must praise. However much we have of any good thing,
            it is from God, not ourselves. How little we have may very well have
            nothing to do with God at all.

            Even if it does, even if He wills straitened times and tightened belts for
            our good and growth, we must bless Him and not murmur or gripe. I can
            assure you that, if I had all I wanted at earlier periods in my life, there
            is very little chance I would be a monk and no chance at all that I would be
            the person I am today. God used all those "lacks" as riches, as tools of most
            exquisite precision. He knew what He was doing, I did not!

            Look back at the Instruments of Good Works in Chapter 4 and the Steps
            of Humility in Chapter 7 and you will find in both a statement of
            this same principle. The monastic is not to complain or murmur, but
            to be happy- even thankful!- for whatever is received. That gratitude
            and joy is essential because everything that is received is a gift
            from God. Everything. Realizing that is a tremendously important
            piece of the puzzle in our monastic searching and striving.

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

            Petersham, MA

             

             

             

             

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