Living the Zeal of Benedict by Marilyn Schauble

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Respect and love

Mon, 2019-06-10 11:08

Respect the elders and love the young. RB 4:70-71

Benedict reminds us that each person
- has a specific place within the (world) community
- is to have an open ear and heart to voices of experience
- is to be aware that every new-comer brings the gift of fresh eyes and thoughts
- is called to live a life of gratitude, respect and love
- is called to recognize and celebrate the uniqueness of all creation

Pride - really?

Fri, 2019-05-17 10:46

Shun arrogance. RB 4:69

So being pleased with oneself might seem to be OK, especially if there is good reason to be pleased. However, lest we get puffed up with pride, Benedict reminds us that everything comes from God as gift. "Those who reverence God should not become elated over their good deeds; they judge it is God's strength, not their own, that brings about the good in them" (RB Prol. 29).

John Cassian, predecessor of Benedict, wrote in Conference 15:7: Humility is the teacher of all the virtues, the most solid foundation of the heavenly building. It is Christ's special and greatest gift.

We make progress in humility by being immersed in the Gospels and developing a personal relationship with Christ. From this relationship we become aware that we are known and loved and lovable.

This is the model for healthy relationships
- to know self
- to know another
- to be known by another
- to love self
- to love another
- to be loved by another

Everything is gift!
Everything is grace!


Fri, 2019-05-03 14:29

Do not love quarreling. RB 4:68

From the first few words of Benedict's Rule
we hear what can make quarreling less prevalent.
"Listen! Listen ... with the ear of your heart." (Prologue 1).

We are to foster a culture of listening to others with profound respect. We are to acknowledge the fact that others have a piece of the truth that we have not heard yet or paid attention to.

Benedict calls us to be open and mindful of what is being said. He reminds us often that different viewpoints are needed before arriving at a healthy level of common agreement.

Somethings I have been thinking about lately:
Am I really open to hear with others have to say
- or am I too attached to my own viewpoint?
Why might I argue with another person
- is it because I feel threatened by their point of view?
- is it because I may have to change?
Do I live as if I am on a One-Way Street
- my way is the only way?
Can I take in another's point of view and blend it with mine
- so that together we can move forward on a common path?

Octave of Easter

Thu, 2019-04-18 11:28

Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

I am no longer afraid of death,
I know well its darkness
and cold corridors leading to life.
I am afraid rather of that life
which does not come out of death.
I live each day to kill death.
I die each day to beget life,
and in this dying until death,
I die a thousand time and am reborn
another thousand through that love
from my community, which nourishes hope.
You will then know how marvelous it is
to live threatened with Resurrection!
To dream awake,
to keep watch asleep,
to live while dying
and to already know oneself resurrected.

Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

Threatened with Resurrection
by Julia Esquivel p. 63, 65

Easter Sequence

Thu, 2019-04-18 11:26

Christians to the Paschal Victim,
offer your thankful praises.

A Lamb redeems the sheep;
Christ, who is sinless,
reconciles sinners to our Creator.

Life and death fought together in great combat.

The Sign of Life, who died, reigns immortal.

Tell us, Mary, what you saw on your way.
"I saw the tomb of the living Christ,
the glory of Jesus' resurrection.

The angels gave witness to the empty shroud.
Christ, my hope, is risen from the dead;
he goes before us into Galilee."

We know that Christ is risen from the dead,
our new life obtaining.
Have mercy on us, victorious one.

Amen Alleluia!

Holy Saturday Lesson - Hebrews 9:24-28

Thu, 2019-04-18 11:10

From the Letter to the Hebrews

Christ did not enter into a holy place
made by hands,
but entered heaven itself,
now to appear in the presence of God
on our behalf.

It was through Christ’s blood
that eternal redemption was obtained
and we were cleansed from lifeless deeds,
so that we could worship the living God.

Christ was offered up once
to take away the sin of many
and will appear a second time,
not to take away sin
but to bring salvation to those
who eagerly wait.

This day we watch for you, O God.
We heed the call of Scripture
that when you return you will find us waiting,
that you will invite us into the feast.

Christ was delivered up to death
that we might receive life.

We heed the call of Scripture.
You will find us waiting and watching.

Good Friday Lesson - Hebrews 4:16-5:10

Thu, 2019-04-18 11:07

From the Letter to the Hebrews

Let us go, therefore,
with confidence into the presence of God
that we may obtain mercy
and find favor in time of need.

For every representative taken from among us
is appointed to act on our behalf
in the things that relate to God.

They offer gifts and sacrifices for sin
and have compassion on those who are ignorant and err,
because they also are encompassed with weakness.

So too, Christ did not seek glory
but was chosen by God who said,
“You are my Beloved:
this day have I begotten you.”

God also said,
“You are the Anointed One
according to the order of Melchizedek.”

Though anointed,
Jesus learned obedience through suffering,
became the source of eternal salvation,
and was appointed by God as our representative
according to the order of Melchizedek.

Sin came into the world,
and with it came death.
It spread to the whole world,
the whole human race,
because all have sinned.

So then,
a single offense condemned all people.
In the same way,
the one righteous act sets all of us free,
giving life.

We have been reconciled to God
through the death of Jesus Christ.
Grace came to so many as an abundant free gift.

Holy Saturday - Lamentation 4:1, 2; 3:22-27

Thu, 2019-04-18 10:53

Lamentation of Jeremiah the prophet

How the gold has grown dim;
how the pure gold is changed!
The holy stones lie scattered at the head of every street.

The precious children of Zion,
worth their weight in fine gold,
are reckoned as earthen pots,
the work of a potter's hands.

The steadfast love of God never ceases,
mercies never come to an end,
they are new every morning;
great is this faithfulness.
"God is my portion,
therefore my hope will not be in vain."

God is good to those who wait;
to those who do not waver.
It is good that we should wait quietly
for the salvation of God.
It is good for us that we bear the yoke in our youth.

Jerusalem, Jerusalem,
be converted to the Holy One, your God.

The One we await dies
and there is none that takes it to heart.
The Anointed One, our breath of life,
in taken away because of our iniquities.

The Just One’s anguish over,
we shall wait in hope.

We shall wait in hope.

Good Friday - Lamentation 2:8-9, 3:1-6

Thu, 2019-04-18 10:20

Lamentation of Jeremiah the prophet

God determined to lay in ruins the wall of the daughter of Zion;
marked it off with the line; restrained not from destroying;
caused rampart and wall to lament, they languished together.

Her gates have sunk into the ground;
God has ruined and broken her bars;
her ruler and leaders are among the nations;
the law is no more,
and her prophets obtain no vision from God.

I am the one who has seen affliction under the rod of God’s wrath;
God has driven me and brought me into darkness without any light;
against me alone God turns again and again the whole day long.

God has made my flesh and my skin waste away;
and broken my bones;
has besieged and enveloped me with bitterness and tribulation;
has made me dwell in darkness like the dead of long ago.

Jerusalem, Jerusalem,
be converted to the Holy One, your God.

We have seen the Just One as not having beauty or comeliness.
There is no sightlines in the One who has borne our sins
and grieves for us. The Just One was wounded for our iniquities.
By these wounds we have been healed.

Surely, this is the One who has borne our infirmities
and carried our sorrows.

By these wounds we have been healed.


Thu, 2019-04-18 10:03

Probably from the 12th century until the Holy Week reforms of 1955, the Office of Tenebrae was the celebration of Matins and Lauds for the last days of Holy Week. The Latin term Tenebrae means shadows or darkness, and suggests symbolically the setting of the Sun of Justice, and the spiritual darkness of the Jewish people. The term came into use most probably because the lights were gradually extinguished in the course of the Office and all departed in darkness and silence. Matins and Lauds of these days were originally the ordinary offices sung by monastic communities serving the Roman basilicas throughout Europe. In their form they reveal certain primitive features of the Roman cathedral office. There were no hymns, no invitatory, and the Doxology at the end of each psalm was suppressed. The lamentations and lessons were sung to a chant of peculiar poignancy.

During the celebration of Tenebrae we process into chapel in silence with the apex candle leading. The candles of the Tenebrae candelabra are lit in order to denote the almost complete abandonment of Christ by the apostles. Nevertheless, the unrecognized light of Christ is not destroyed, as the 15th candle gives evidence. In the midst of the deepening darkness, the light of this candle still shines.

The sung Lamentations and Prayer of Jeremiah, the Prophet, call the people of God to repent of their transgressions. Jeremiah mourns the destruction of Jerusalem, and pleads with the people to return to God. His grief is recorded in the Lamentations, which form part of our Tenebrae service. The different sung sections are introduced by the Hebrew alphabet, Aleph, Beth, Teth, etc.

The sung Lessons of the Book of Hebrews, remind us of the incarnation and exaltation of Christ. The author of Hebrews presents to all people the everlasting priesthood of Christ, a priesthood that fulfills the promise of the Old Testament.

Tenebrae is a prolonged meditation on the events of salvation running from the Last Supper to the entombment. Themes of betrayal, the judgment, crucifixion, death, burial and the expectation of resurrection resound throughout.

Join us for Tenebrae Good Friday & Holy Saturday at 9 a.m.
If you are unable to attend I will be posting the Lessons and Lamentations.
Blessings during this holy time!

Holy Thursday - I Corinthians 11:23-26

Thu, 2019-04-18 09:53

Sisters and brothers, I received from God what I also handed on to you, that Jesus, on the night he was handed over, took bread, and after he had given thanks, broke it and said, “This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way also took the cup, after supper, saying: “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.” For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the death of Jesus until he comes again.

We end this night with the remembrance of Jesus as servant, our hearts ready to celebrate the mystery of his passion, death and resurrection – to celebrate the opportunity to renew our own commitment to die to self so that we, too, might live a new life.

Harbor no jealousy, no envy

Thu, 2019-04-04 11:35

Harbor no jealousy; do nothing out of envy. RB 4: 66-67

Jealousy and envy are often used as synonyms. Their definitions according to Webster's Dictionary have some similarities but the two words are more accurately marked by differences. Jealousy can be applied to feelings of protectiveness regarding one’s own advantages or attachments. Envy can be applied to feelings of wanting to have what someone else has.

One way to tell that jealousy and envy are running my life is when I do not want to share with others the good things that I have, and I resent the fact that they possess goods or qualities that I desire but do not have. Harboring jealousy or envy will most likely be destructive of community/family/work even if it is found only in a single member of the group. Jealousy and envy alienate me from myself, from my sisters and brothers, my neighbors, the world, and from God.

Benedict says it simply: Just don't let jealousy or envy into your heart.

Again, few words - tall order!

Harbor no hatred

Wed, 2019-03-27 11:42

Harbor no hatred. RB 4:65

This statement is based on the Leviticus 19:17:
You shall not hate in your heart anyone of your kin,
and prescribed by the Didache 2:
You shall not hate anyone.

In this simple statement Benedict is reminding all of us
of the second great commandment:
You shall love your neighbor as yourself.

We are being asked to respect and reverence
- ourselves
- those we live with
- those we don't live with (near and far, known or unknown)
- all of creation.

Three short words - a tall order for sure!

Solemnity of Benedict

Wed, 2019-03-20 18:48

March 21 - The Passing of Benedict

Six days before Benedict's death, he ordered his tomb to be opened. Soon he was attacked by fever and was weakened with severe suffering. As the illness grew worse every day, Benedict asked his disciples to carry him into the oratory. There he strengthened himself for his departure. While the hands of his disciples held up his weak limbs, Benedict stood with his hands raised to heaven and breathed his last breath amidst words of prayer.

On that same day a revelation concerning Benedict came to two brothers, one of them resting in his cell, the other a long way off, in the form of a self-same vision. For they saw a road going in an easterly direction covered with carpets and shining with innumerable lamps which led from the cell right up to heaven. Above stood the shining figure of a man in venerable array who asked them if they knew whose road it was. The brothers admitted that they did not. So he said to them, "This is the road by which Benedict, beloved of God, ascends to heaven." Thus the death of the holy man was seen by the disciples present and was also made known to those absent by the sign foretold to them.

Benedict was buried in the oratory of blessed John the Baptist which he himself had built after he destroyed the altar of Apollo.

The Life of Saint Benedict
by Gregory the Great

Novena - Benedict - March 20

Wed, 2019-03-20 05:59

Pray with us!

Ever-creating God, we witness your love in the expression of Benedictine life. As we prepare to celebrate the Solemnity of Saint Benedict, may we be ever-mindful of Benedictine influence in past ages, and may our continued commitment give hope to oppressed peoples who seek peace and justice. We pray in praise of your holy name now and forever. Amen.

Novena - Benedict - March 19

Tue, 2019-03-19 05:58

Pray with us!
O God, you wondrously inspired Joseph and Benedict to show us the way to life by their faithfulness to the Spirit. Grant that through their intercession we may persevere. We pray in praise of your holy name now and forever. Amen.

Novena - Benedict - March 18

Mon, 2019-03-18 05:59

God, our Sustainer, we come before you asking that you strengthen us. Through the intercession of Benedict, may we be impelled to participate in healing ministries which bring peace and justice to all. We pray in praise of your holy name now and forever. Amen.

Novena - Benedict - March 17

Sun, 2019-03-17 07:32

God, our Creator, we are full of gratitude for your many blessings. As we anticipate the solemnity of Benedict, may we continue our journey to you, following in the footsteps of Benedict – emptying ourselves for others. May we be gift for others. We pray in praise of your holy name now and forever. Amen.

Novena - Benedict - March 16

Fri, 2019-03-15 21:13

Raise up, O God, in the church the spirit that animated Benedict, that filled with the same spirit we may love what he loved and practice what he taught. We pray in praise of your holy name now and forever. Amen.

Novena - Benedict - March 15

Thu, 2019-03-14 21:34

Pray with us!
Eternal God, you favored Benedict with the spirit of wisdom and understanding. Grant that we may also be sanctified by these virtues. We pray in praise of your holy name now and forever. Amen.