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Holy Rule for Dec. 24

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  • Jerry Lee
    +PAX Prayers, please for Jojo s aunt, schizophrenia, also for his younger brother, similarly afflicted and for Jojo s job application success. Prayers, too,
    Message 1 of 4 , Dec 24, 2004
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      Prayers, please for Jojo's aunt, schizophrenia, also for his younger brother, similarly afflicted and for Jojo's job application success. Prayers, too, for Joey, killed two days ago in a car accident and for his daughter Maddie who was the driver, and his wife, Laura and all their family.Prayers for them, for Liz and for all who have lost someone dear during this holy season. People are dying every day in Iraq, troops and civilians, Americans and Iraqis. Every death leaves a scar, a broken heart, a family changed forever. Let us pray for them all, and for all the depressed, for whom holidays are often so rough. God's will is best. All is mercy and grace. God is never absent. Alleluia! Thanks so much! JL

      April 24, August 24, December 24
      Chapter 66: On the Porter of the Monastery

      At the gate of the monastery
      let there be placed a wise old woman,
      who knows how to receive and to give a message,
      and whose maturity will prevent her from straying about.
      This porter should have a room near the gate,
      so that those who come may always find someone at hand
      to attend to their business.
      And as soon as anyone knocks or a poor person hails her,
      let her answer "Thanks be to God" or "A blessing!"
      Then let her attend to them promptly,
      with all the meekness inspired by the fear of God
      and with the warmth of charity.

      Should the porter need help,
      let her have one of the younger sisters.

      If it can be done,
      the monastery should be so established
      that all the necessary things,
      such as water, mill, garden and various workshops,
      may be within the enclosure,
      so that there is no necessity
      for the sisters to go about outside of it,
      since that is not at all profitable for their souls.

      We desire that this Rule be read often in the community,
      so that none of the sisters may excuse herself
      on the ground of ignorance.

      REFLECTION

      Modern monasteries in our Order rarely have gatehouses, let alone
      porters waiting at them. In one way, that's too bad, because one
      often sees visitors come to a monastery without a clue as to where to
      go first, or how to contact someone. On the other hand, it would
      wasteful to employ one person full-time at such an endeavor in our
      smaller communities of today, since whole days may go by in many
      places with few or none needing assistance.

      What we have today is the phone, and phone manners are how this best
      translates into modern life for both Oblates and professed. I have
      certainly known monks who have answered the phone with an attitude
      that clearly said: "You've got some nerve putting me out like this,
      disturbing me, etc." Sadly, that attitude came forth in years way
      before telemarketing was big, and with no knowledge of the person on
      the other end of the line. One certainly wouldn't want to call such a
      monastery twice. If one had never called one before, it is unlikely
      that one would want to try another, to go for 2 out of 3, just in
      case. See the responsibility we have?

      When a phone or doorbell rings, whether in a great Benedictine abbey
      or an urban Benedictine apartment, we have the opportunity to
      practice the hospitable grace that the Holy Rule requires of all.
      Dorothy Day's friend and mentor, Father Hugo, used to say that we
      love God as much as the one we love the least. That would readily
      translate here. I LOVE to see certain guests arrive, look forward to
      it as soon as I hear they are coming. Those are not the receptions on
      which I should judge my hospitality. Telemarketers are.

      With the universal scorn that telemarketing seems to enjoy today, it
      might be well to examine the sort of person who is forced to seek
      such employment before we dump on them. Unless one is really sado-
      masochistic with a strong need for abuse and rejection, why on earth
      would anyone choose to spend hours a day with such rudeness? Of
      course the practice is annoying, but the employee is not to blame. It
      may be the only job a desperate person can get. Why spew vituperative
      and shoot the messenger?

      Granted, engaging in any kind of prolonged conversation is not
      advisable, but I have a simple phrase: "I'm sorry, but we don't do
      any form telephone solicitation. Thank you." Then I hang up. Said
      politely, this does not heap coals on their heads, but it gets the
      message across. One can be firm and still be courteous and kind.
      Since I generally answer the phone with "God bless you, this is
      Brother Jerome," how would I dare treat people otherwise?

      The point here is that we ARE Benedictines, whether our answering
      style makes that evident or not. I might not like to think so, but
      the anonymity of just saying "Hello," without my name or title does
      not entitle me to be harsh or gruff or rude. All of us are bound by
      something Benedictine within us to be kind and gracious to all who
      call or visit.

      Someone who calls the guesthouse for the first time can be driven
      away or attracted by the way they are dealt with on the phone. To
      risk alienating someone because of our own moods might mean that we
      cheat someone out of a spiritual respite they sorely need. I can't
      tell you how many people who just called us out of nowhere in the
      last seven years have become real members of our family, greatly
      beneficial to themselves and to us. Anyone of those first experiences
      could have been irreparably soured by a cranky phone manner. Look at
      what all of us would have lost had that happened.

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

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Jerry Lee
      +PAX Yesterday, I mistakenly gave the name of Coach Tony Dungy s son, who apparently committed suicide, as Dane. His name is actually James. Mea culpa!
      Message 2 of 4 , Dec 24, 2005
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        +PAX

        Yesterday, I mistakenly gave the name of Coach Tony Dungy's son, who apparently committed suicide, as Dane. His name is actually James. Mea culpa! However, though I did want to correct the mistake, God knew- and knows- whom we meant. Thanks to Shirley for kindly pointing me in the right direction.

        Prayers, please for Fr. Peter, seeking discernment of God's will in an important decision. Another Pete, for whom we prayed, must have his lower leg amputated. This confront his wife Betsy, half his size, with a lot of home care issues that need to be resolved. Pete's surgery is on January 5, so plenty of time to storm heaven for them both and for his doctors. Rosemary, scheduled for knee surgery on January 4, prayers for her and her doctors A Deo gratias and prayers of thanks for P., whose balance and tremor problems turned out to be just related to a back problem, her EEG and brain scans are fine. Lord, help them as You know and will. God's will is best. All is mercy and grace. Thanks so much! JL


        April 24, August 24, December 24
        Chapter 66: On the Porter of the Monastery

        At the gate of the monastery
        let there be placed a wise old woman,
        who knows how to receive and to give a message,
        and whose maturity will prevent her from straying about.
        This porter should have a room near the gate,
        so that those who come may always find someone at hand
        to attend to their business.
        And as soon as anyone knocks or a poor person hails her,
        let her answer "Thanks be to God" or "A blessing!"
        Then let her attend to them promptly,
        with all the meekness inspired by the fear of God
        and with the warmth of charity.

        Should the porter need help,
        let her have one of the younger sisters.

        If it can be done,
        the monastery should be so established
        that all the necessary things,
        such as water, mill, garden and various workshops,
        may be within the enclosure,
        so that there is no necessity
        for the sisters to go about outside of it,
        since that is not at all profitable for their souls.

        We desire that this Rule be read often in the community,
        so that none of the sisters may excuse herself
        on the ground of ignorance.

        REFLECTION

        Modern monasteries in our Order rarely have gatehouses, let alone
        porters waiting at them. In one way, that's too bad, because one
        often sees visitors come to a monastery without a clue as to where to
        go first, or how to contact someone. On the other hand, it would
        wasteful to employ one person full-time at such an endeavor in our
        smaller communities of today, since whole days may go by in many
        places with few or none needing assistance.

        What we have today is the phone, and phone manners are how this best
        translates into modern life for both Oblates and professed. I have
        certainly known monks who have answered the phone with an attitude
        that clearly said: "You've got some nerve putting me out like this,
        disturbing me, etc." One certainly wouldn't want to call such a
        monastery twice. If one had never called one before, it is unlikely
        that one would want to try another, to go for 2 out of 3, just in
        case. See the responsibility we have?

        When a phone or doorbell rings, whether in a great Benedictine abbey
        or an urban Benedictine apartment, we have the opportunity to
        practice the hospitable grace that the Holy Rule requires of all.
        Dorothy Day's friend and mentor, Father Hugo, used to say that we
        love God as much as the one we love the least.

        That would readily translate here. I LOVE to see certain guests arrive,
        look forward to it as soon as I hear they are coming. Those are not the
        receptions on which I should judge my hospitality. The tough-to-love
        ones are.

        The point here is that we ARE Benedictines, whether our answering
        style of door or phone makes that evident or not. I might not like to think
        so, but the anonymity of just saying "Hello," one the phone, without my
        name or title does not entitle me to be harsh or gruff or rude. All of us are
        bound by something Benedictine within us to be kind and gracious to all
        who call or visit.

        Someone who calls the guesthouse for the first time can be driven
        away or attracted by the way they are dealt with on the phone.
        A vocation could driven away by a smartingly cold response. To
        risk alienating someone because of our own moods might mean that we
        cheat someone out of a spiritual respite they sorely need.

        I can't tell you how many people who just called us out of nowhere in the
        last nine years have become real members of our family, greatly
        beneficial to themselves and to us. Anyone of those first experiences
        could have been irreparably soured by a cranky phone manner. Look at
        what all of us would have lost had that happened.

        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 Mike, whom we prayed for after his 2 heart attacks and strokes is now having trouble with his blood-thinning meds, not working so far and the flu is
        Message 3 of 4 , Dec 23, 2006
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          +PAX

          Mike, whom we prayed for after his 2 heart attacks and strokes is now having
          trouble with his blood-thinning meds, not working so far and the flu is
          complicating matters. He badly needs to get his blood-thinners on track to
          prevent another stroke. Otherwise, his recovery thus far has been nothing short of
          miraculous, so continued prayers! Prayers for Linda, 18 radiation treatments
          down, 9 to go. Prayers, too, for her husband, Rod, and all their family.
          Prayers for Steve, on a vocational retreat, for the discernment that only
          God can give of His perfect will. Prayers for James, wrestling with depression
          and wondering where God wants him next. Prayers for all of us and all those we
          love: may the holiness and joy of our Christmas celebrations radiate out to
          others and draw them to Christ. 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 24, August 24, December 24
          Chapter 66: On the Porter of the Monastery

          At the gate of the monastery
          let there be placed a wise old woman,
          who knows how to receive and to give a message,
          and whose maturity will prevent her from straying about.
          This porter should have a room near the gate,
          so that those who come may always find someone at hand
          to attend to their business.
          And as soon as anyone knocks or a poor person hails her,
          let her answer "Thanks be to God" or "A blessing!"
          Then let her attend to them promptly,
          with all the meekness inspired by the fear of God
          and with the warmth of charity.

          Should the porter need help,
          let her have one of the younger sisters.

          If it can be done,
          the monastery should be so established
          that all the necessary things,
          such as water, mill, garden and various workshops,
          may be within the enclosure,
          so that there is no necessity
          for the sisters to go about outside of it,
          since that is not at all profitable for their souls.

          We desire that this Rule be read often in the community,
          so that none of the sisters may excuse herself
          on the ground of ignorance.

          REFLECTION

          Modern monasteries in our Order rarely have gatehouses, let alone
          porters waiting at them. In one way, that's too bad, because one
          often sees visitors come to a monastery without a clue as to where to
          go first, or how to contact someone. On the other hand, it would
          wasteful to employ one person full-time at such an endeavor in our
          smaller communities of today, since whole days may go by in many
          places with few or none needing assistance.

          What we have today is the phone, and phone manners are how this best
          translates into modern life for both Oblates and professed. I have
          certainly known monks who have answered the phone with an attitude
          that clearly said: "You've got some nerve putting me out like this,
          disturbing me, etc." One certainly wouldn't want to call such a
          monastery twice. If one had never called one before, it is unlikely
          that one would want to try another, to go for 2 out of 3, just in
          case. See the responsibility we have?

          When a phone or doorbell rings, whether in a great Benedictine abbey
          or an urban Benedictine apartment, we have the opportunity to
          practice the hospitable grace that the Holy Rule requires of all.
          Dorothy Day's friend and mentor, Father Hugo, used to say that we
          love God as much as the one we love the least.

          That would readily translate here. I LOVE to see certain guests arrive,
          look forward to it as soon as I hear they are coming. Those are not the
          receptions on which I should judge my hospitality. The tough-to-love
          ones are.

          The point here is that we ARE Benedictines, whether our answering
          style of door or phone makes that evident or not. I might not like to think
          so, but the anonymity of just saying "Hello," one the phone, without my
          name or title does not entitle me to be harsh or gruff or rude. All of us are
          bound by something Benedictine within us to be kind and gracious to all
          who call or visit.

          Someone who calls the guesthouse for the first time can be driven
          away or attracted by the way they are dealt with on the phone.
          A vocation could driven away by a smartingly cold response. To
          risk alienating someone because of our own moods might mean that we
          cheat someone out of a spiritual respite they sorely need.

          I can't tell you how many people who just called us out of nowhere in the
          last nine years have become real members of our family, greatly
          beneficial to themselves and to us. Anyone of those first experiences
          could have been irreparably soured by a cranky phone manner. Look at
          what all of us would have lost had that happened.

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



          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Br. Jerome Leo
          +PAX Prayers for the happy death and eternal rest of Ted, killed in a car wreck while travelling to see family at Christmas, and for all who mourn him. Prayers
          Message 4 of 4 , Dec 23, 2007
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            +PAX

            Prayers for the happy death and eternal rest of Ted, killed in a car wreck while travelling to see family at Christmas, and for all who mourn him.

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

            Elaine's Dad, dementia, severe weight loss, and very sick just now. The Ted we prayed for above was a dear friend of his, who visited him regularly.

            Carolyn and John, trying to find God's will for their lives.Lord, help us all as You know and will. God's wi;; is best. All is mercy and grace. God is never absent, praise Him! Thanks so much. JL

            April 24, August 24, December 24
            Chapter 66: On the Porter of the Monastery

            At the gate of the monastery
            let there be placed a wise old woman,
            who knows how to receive and to give a message,
            and whose maturity will prevent her from straying about.
            This porter should have a room near the gate,
            so that those who come may always find someone at hand
            to attend to their business.
            And as soon as anyone knocks or a poor person hails her,
            let her answer "Thanks be to God" or "A blessing!"
            Then let her attend to them promptly,
            with all the meekness inspired by the fear of God
            and with the warmth of charity.

            Should the porter need help,
            let her have one of the younger sisters.

            If it can be done,
            the monastery should be so established
            that all the necessary things,
            such as water, mill, garden and various workshops,
            may be within the enclosure,
            so that there is no necessity
            for the sisters to go about outside of it,
            since that is not at all profitable for their souls.

            We desire that this Rule be read often in the community,
            so that none of the sisters may excuse herself
            on the ground of ignorance.

            REFLECTION

            Modern monasteries in our Order rarely have gatehouses, let alone
            porters waiting at them. In one way, that's too bad, because one
            often sees visitors come to a monastery without a clue as to where to
            go first, or how to contact someone. On the other hand, it would
            wasteful to employ one person full-time at such an endeavor in our
            smaller communities of today, since whole days may go by in many
            places with few or none needing assistance.

            What we have today is the phone, and phone manners are how this best
            translates into modern life for both Oblates and professed. I have
            certainly known monks who have answered the phone with an attitude
            that clearly said: "You've got some nerve putting me out like this,
            disturbing me, etc." One certainly wouldn't want to call such a
            monastery twice. If one had never called one before, it is unlikely
            that one would want to try another, to go for 2 out of 3, just in
            case. See the responsibility we have?

            When a phone or doorbell rings, whether in a great Benedictine abbey
            or an urban Benedictine apartment, we have the opportunity to
            practice the hospitable grace that the Holy Rule requires of all.
            Dorothy Day's friend and mentor, Father Hugo, used to say that we
            love God as much as the one we love the least.

            That would readily translate here. I LOVE to see certain guests arrive,
            look forward to it as soon as I hear they are coming. Those are not the
            receptions on which I should judge my hospitality. The tough-to-love
            ones are.

            The point here is that we ARE Benedictines, whether our answering
            style of door or phone makes that evident or not. I might not like to think
            so, but the anonymity of just saying "Hello," one the phone, without my
            name or title does not entitle me to be harsh or gruff or rude. All of us are
            bound by something Benedictine within us to be kind and gracious to all
            who call or visit.

            Someone who calls the guesthouse for the first time can be driven
            away or attracted by the way they are dealt with on the phone.
            A vocation could driven away by a smartingly cold response. To
            risk alienating someone because of our own moods might mean that we
            cheat someone out of a spiritual respite they sorely need.

            I can't tell you how many people who just called us out of nowhere in the
            last nine years have become real members of our family, greatly
            beneficial to themselves and to us. Anyone of those first experiences
            could have been irreparably soured by a cranky phone manner. Look at
            what all of us would have lost had that happened.

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




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