HR#27 “To contemplate the Holy Eucharist ” – The Holy Rule of St. Benedict with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B

Episode 27- The Holy Rule of St. Benedict: A Spiritual Path for Today’s World with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B.,
Ph.D
.

“To contemplate the Holy Eucharist”

From the Holy Rule of St. Benedict:

St.-Benedict-d

PROLOGUE

Listen, O my son, to the precepts of thy master, and incline the ear of thy heart, and cheerfully receive and faithfully execute the admonitions of thy loving Father, that by the toil of obedience thou mayest return to Him from whom by the sloth of disobedience thou hast gone away.

To thee, therefore, my speech is now directed, who, giving up thine own will, takest up the strong and most excellent arms of obedience, to do battle for Christ the Lord, the true King.

In the first place, beg of Him by most earnest prayer, that He perfect whatever good thou dost begin, in order that He who hath been pleased to count us in the number of His children, need never be grieved at our evil deeds. For we ought at all times so to serve Him with the good things which He hath given us, that He may not, like an angry father, disinherit his children, nor, like a dread lord, enraged at our evil deeds, hand us over to everlasting punishment as most wicked servants, who would not follow Him to glory.

Father Mauritius Wilde, OSB, Ph.D., did his philosophical, theological, and doctoral studies in Europe. He is the author of several books and directs retreats regularly. He serves as Prior at Sant’Anselmo in Rome.

For more, be sure to visit The Holy Rule of St. Benedict Rule with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B. Podcast Discerning Hearts page

HR#26 “In place of serving self…the community meal ” – The Holy Rule of St. Benedict with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B

“In place of serving self…the community meal”  – The Holy Rule of St. Benedict: A Spiritual Path for Today’s World with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B., Ph.D.

From the Holy Rule of St. Benedict:

St.-Benedict-d

CHAPTER XXIV

The degree of excommunication or punishment ought to be meted out according to the gravity of the offense, and to determine that is left to the judgment of the Abbot. If, however, anyone of the brethren is detected in smaller faults, let him be debarred from eating at the common table. The following shall be the practice respecting one who is excluded from the common table: that he does not intone a psalm or an antiphon nor read a lesson in the oratory until he hath made satisfaction; let him take his meal alone, after the refection of the brethren; thus: if, for instance, the brethren take their meal at the sixth hour that brother will take his at the ninth, and if the brethren take theirs at the ninth, he will take his in the evening, until by due satisfaction he obtaineth pardon.

Father Mauritius Wilde, OSB, Ph.D., did his philosophical, theological, and doctoral studies in Europe. He is the author of several books and directs retreats regularly. He serves as Prior at Sant’Anselmo in Rome.

For more, be sure to visit The Holy Rule of St. Benedict Rule with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B. PodcastDiscerning Hearts page

 

HR#25 “Leadership and the Holy Rule” – The Holy Rule of St. Benedict with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B

Episode 25 – The Holy Rule of St. Benedict: A Spiritual Path for Today’s World with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B., Ph.D.

From the Holy Rule of St. Benedict:

CHAPTER II

The Abbot who is worthy to be over a monastery, ought always to be mindful of what he is called, and make his works square with his name of Superior. For he is believed to hold the place of Christ in the monastery, when he is called by his name, according to the saying of the Apostle: “You have received the spirit of adoption of sons, whereby we cry Abba (Father)” (Rom 8:15). Therefore, the Abbot should never teach, prescribe, or command (which God forbid) anything contrary to the laws of the Lord; but his commands and teaching should be instilled like a leaven of divine justice into the minds of his disciples.

Let the Abbot always bear in mind that he must give an account in the dread judgment of God of both his own teaching and of the obedience of his disciples. And let the Abbot know that whatever lack of profit the master of the house shall find in the sheep, will be laid to the blame of the shepherd. On the other hand he will be blameless, if he gave all a shepherd’s care to his restless and unruly flock, and took all pains to correct their corrupt manners; so that their shepherd, acquitted at the Lord’s judgment seat, may say to the Lord with the Prophet: “I have not hid Thy justice within my heart. I have declared Thy truth and Thy salvation” (Ps 39[40]:11). “But they contemning have despised me” (Is 1:2; Ezek 20:27). Then at length eternal death will be the crushing doom of the rebellious sheep under his charge.

When, therefore, anyone taketh the name of Abbot he should govern his disciples by a twofold teaching; namely, he should show them all that is good and holy by his deeds more than by his words; explain the commandments of God to intelligent disciples by words, but show the divine precepts to the dull and simple by his works. And let him show by his actions, that whatever he teacheth his disciples as being contrary to the law of God must not be done, “lest perhaps when he hath preached to others, he himself should become a castaway” (1 Cor 9:27), and he himself committing sin, God one day say to him: “Why dost thou declare My justices, and take My covenant in thy mouth? But thou hast hated discipline, and hast cast My words behind thee” (Ps 49[50]:16-17). And: “Thou who sawest the mote in thy brother’s eye, hast not seen the beam in thine own” (Mt 7:3).

Let him make no distinction of persons in the monastery. Let him not love one more than another, unless it be one whom he findeth more exemplary in good works and obedience. Let not a free-born be preferred to a freedman, unless there be some other reasonable cause. But if from a just reason the Abbot deemeth it proper to make such a distinction, he may do so in regard to the rank of anyone whomsoever; otherwise let everyone keep his own place; for whether bond or free, we are all one in Christ (cf Gal 3:28; Eph 6:8), and we all bear an equal burden of servitude under one Lord, “for there is no respect of persons with God” (Rom 2:11). We are distinguished with Him in this respect alone, if we are found to excel others in good works and in humility. Therefore, let him have equal charity for all, and impose a uniform discipline for all according to merit.

For in his teaching the Abbot should always observe that principle of the Apostle in which he saith: “Reprove, entreat, rebuke” (2 Tm 4:2), that is, mingling gentleness with severity, as the occasion may call for, let him show the severity of the master and the loving affection of a father. He must sternly rebuke the undisciplined and restless; but he must exhort the obedient, meek, and patient to advance in virtue. But we charge him to rebuke and punish the negligent and haughty. Let him not shut his eyes to the sins of evil-doers; but on their first appearance let him do his utmost to cut them out from the root at once, mindful of the fate of Heli, the priest of Silo (cf 1 Sam 2:11-4:18). The well-disposed and those of good understanding, let him correct at the first and second admonition only with words; but let him chastise the wicked and the hard of heart, and the proud and disobedient at the very first offense with stripes and other bodily punishments, knowing that it is written: “The fool is not corrected with words” (Prov 29:19). And again: “Strike thy son with the rod, and thou shalt deliver his soul from death” (Prov 23:14).

The Abbot ought always to remember what he is and what he is called, and to know that to whom much hath been entrusted, from him much will be required; and let him understand what a difficult and arduous task he assumeth in governing souls and accommodating himself to a variety of characters. Let him so adjust and adapt himself to everyone — to one gentleness of speech, to another by reproofs, and to still another by entreaties, to each one according to his bent and understanding — that he not only suffer no loss in his flock, but may rejoice in the increase of a worthy fold.

Above all things, that the Abbot may not neglect or undervalue the welfare of the souls entrusted to him, let him not have too great a concern about fleeting, earthly, perishable things; but let him always consider that he hath undertaken the government of souls, of which he must give an account. And that he may not perhaps complain of the want of earthly means, let him remember what is written: “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His justice, and all these things shall be added unto you” (Mt 6:33). And again: “There is no want to them that fear Him” (Ps 33[34]:10). And let him know that he who undertaketh the government of souls must prepare himself to give an account for them; and whatever the number of brethren he hath under his charge, let him be sure that on judgment day he will, without doubt, have to give an account to the Lord for all these souls, in addition to that of his own. And thus, whilst he is in constant fear of the Shepherd’s future examination about the sheep entrusted to him, and is watchful of his account for others, he is made solicitous also on his own account; and whilst by his admonitions he had administered correction to others, he is freed from his own failings.

Father Mauritius Wilde, OSB, Ph.D., did his philosophical, theological, and doctoral studies in Europe. He is the author of several books and directs retreats regularly. He serves as Prior at Sant’Anselmo in Rome.

For more, be sure to visit The Holy Rule of St. Benedict Rule with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B. PodcastDiscerning Hearts page

HR#24 The Monk, the Missionary Spirit and Evangelization – The Holy Rule of St. Benedict with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B

The Monk, the Missionary Spirit and Evangelization

From the Holy Rule of St. Benedict:

 

PROLOGUE

Listen, O my son, to the precepts of thy master, and incline the ear of thy heart, and cheerfully receive and faithfully execute the admonitions of thy loving Father, that by the toil of obedience thou mayest return to Him from whom by the sloth of disobedience thou hast gone away.

To thee, therefore, my speech is now directed, who, giving up thine own will, takest up the strong and most excellent arms of obedience, to do battle for Christ the Lord, the true King.

Father Mauritius Wilde, OSB, Ph.D., did his philosophical, theological, and doctoral studies in Europe. He is the author of several books and directs retreats regularly. He serves as Prior at Sant’Anselmo in Rome.

For more, be sure to visit The Holy Rule of St. Benedict Rule with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B. Podcast Discerning Hearts page

HR#23 “Prayer during the Night” – The Holy Rule of St. Benedict with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B – Discerning Hearts Podcast

Prayer during the Night

From the Holy Rule of St. Benedict:

 

CHAPTER 8

Of the Divine Office during the Night

Making due allowance for circumstances, the brethren will rise during the winter season, that is, from the calends of November till Easter, at the eighth hour of the night; so that, having rested till a little after midnight, they may rise refreshed. The time, however, which remains over after the night office (Matins) will be employed in study by those of the brethren who still have some parts of the psalms and the lessons to learn.

But from Easter to the aforesaid calends, let the hour for celebrating the night office (Matins) be so arranged, that after a very short interval, during which the brethren may go out for the necessities of nature, the morning office (Lauds), which is to be said at the break of day, may follow presently.

Father Mauritius Wilde, OSB, Ph.D., did his philosophical, theological, and doctoral studies in Europe. He is the author of several books and directs retreats regularly. He serves as Prior at Sant’Anselmo in Rome.

For more, be sure to visit The Holy Rule of St. Benedict Rule with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B. Podcast Discerning Hearts page

HR#21 “Fighting the Demons” – The Holy Rule of St. Benedict with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B – Discerning Hearts Podcast

Fighting the Demons

From the Holy Rule of St. Benedict:

CHAPTER I

an excerpt:

The second kind is that of Anchorites, or Hermits, that is, of those who, no longer in the first fervor of their conversion, but taught by long monastic practice and the help of many brethren, have already learned to fight against the devil; and going forth from the rank of their brethren well trained for single combat in the desert, they are able, with the help of God, to cope single-handed without the help of others, against the vices of the flesh and evil thoughts.

Special note:  Fr. Mauritius speaks of a book by Evagrius of Pontus, the link is below :

Evagrius Of Pontus: Talking Back: A Monastic Handbook for Combating Demons (Cistercian Studies)

Father Mauritius Wilde, OSB, Ph.D., did his philosophical, theological, and doctoral studies in Europe. He is the author of several books and directs retreats regularly. He serves as Prior at Sant’Anselmo in Rome.

For more, be sure to visit The Holy Rule of St. Benedict Rule with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B. Podcast Discerning Hearts page

 

HR#18 “Listening to God’s Voice…Obedience” – The Holy Rule of St. Benedict with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B

Episode 18 – The Holy Rule of St. Benedict: A Spiritual Path for Today’s World with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B., Ph.D.

Listening to God’s Voice…Obedience

From the Holy Rule of St. Benedict:

CHAPTER V

Of ObedienceThe first degree of humility is obedience without delay. This becometh those who, on account of the holy subjection which they have promised, or of the fear of hell, or the glory of life everlasting, hold nothing dearer than Christ. As soon as anything hath been commanded by the Superior they permit no delay in the execution, as if the matter had been commanded by God Himself. Of these the Lord saith: “At the hearing of the ear he hath obeyed Me” (Ps 17[18]:45). And again He saith to the teachers: “He that heareth you heareth Me” (Lk 10:16).Such as these, therefore, instantly quitting their own work and giving up their own will, with hands disengaged, and leaving unfinished what they were doing, follow up, with the ready step of obedience, the work of command with deeds; and thus, as if in the same moment, both matters — the master’s command and the disciple’s finished work — are, in the swiftness of the fear of God, speedily finished together, whereunto the desire of advancing to eternal life urgeth them. They, therefore, seize upon the narrow way whereof the Lord saith: “Narrow is the way which leadeth to life” (Mt 7:14), so that, not living according to their own desires and pleasures but walking according to the judgment and will of another, they live in monasteries, and desire an Abbot to be over them. Such as these truly live up to the maxim of the Lord in which He saith: “I came not to do My own will, but the will of Him that sent Me” (Jn 6:38).

This obedience, however, will be acceptable to God and agreeable to men then only, if what is commanded is done without hesitation, delay, lukewarmness, grumbling or complaint, because the obedience which is rendered to Superiors is rendered to God. For He Himself hath said: “He that heareth you heareth Me” (Lk 10:16). And it must be rendered by the disciples with a good will, “for the Lord loveth a cheerful giver (2 Cor 9:7). ” For if the disciple obeyeth with an ill will, and murmureth, not only with lips but also in his heart, even though he fulfil the command, yet it will not be acceptable to God, who regardeth the heart of the murmurer. And for such an action he acquireth no reward; rather he incurreth the penalty of murmurers, unless he maketh satisfactory amendment.

Father Mauritius Wilde, OSB, Ph.D., did his philosophical, theological, and doctoral studies in Europe. He is the author of several books and directs retreats regularly. He serves as Prior at Sant’Anselmo in Rome.

For more, be sure to visit The Holy Rule of St. Benedict Rule with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B. Podcast Discerning Hearts page

 

HR#15 “In place of wanting the latest….sustainability” – The Holy Rule of St. Benedict with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B

In place of wanting the latest….sustainability

From the Holy Rule of St. Benedict:

CHAPTER XXXI

The Kind of Man the Cellarer of the Monastery Ought to Be

Let there be chosen from the brotherhood as Cellarer of the monastery a wise man, of settled habits, temperate and frugal, not conceited, irritable, resentful, sluggish, or wasteful, but fearing God, who may be as a father to the whole brotherhood.

Let him have the charge of everything, let him do nothing without the command of the Abbot, let him do what hath been ordered him and not grieve the brethren. If a brother should perchance request anything of him unreasonably let him not sadden the brother with a cold refusal, but politely and with humility refuse him who asketh amiss. Let him be watchful of his own soul, always mindful of the saying of the Apostle: “For they that have ministered well, shall purchase to themselves a good degree” (1 Tm 3:13). Let him provide for the sick, the children, the guests, and the poor, with all care, knowing that, without doubt, he will have to give an account of all these things on judgment day. Let him regard all the vessels of the monastery and all its substance, as if they were sacred vessels of the altar. Let him neglect nothing and let him not give way to avarice, nor let him be wasteful and a squanderer of the goods of the monastery; but let him do all things in due measure and according to the bidding of his Abbot.

Above all things, let him be humble; and if he hath not the things to give, let him answer with a kind word, because it is written: “A good word is above the best gift” (Sir 18:17). Let him have under his charge everything that the Abbot hath entrusted to him, and not presume to meddle with matters forbidden him. Let him give the brethren their apportioned allowance without a ruffle or delay, that they may not be scandalized, mindful of what the Divine Word declareth that he deserveth who shall scandalize one of these little ones: “It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea” (Mt 18:6).

If the community is large, let assistants be given him, that, with their help, he too may fulfil the office entrusted to him with an even temper. Let the things that are to be given be distributed, and the things that are to be gotten asked for at the proper times, so that nobody may be disturbed or grieved in the house of God.

Father Mauritius Wilde, OSB, Ph.D., did his philosophical, theological, and doctoral studies in Europe. He is the author of several books and directs retreats regularly. He serves as Prior at Sant’Anselmo in Rome.

HR-Soberness- 4 “Finding Balance” – The Holy Rule of St. Benedict with Fr. Mauritius Wilde OSB Podcast

Everybody seeks for himself a healthy balance in his life. Our whole life is a balancing, to inhale and exhale to the pendulum movement of wakefulness and sleep. We work and recover, we are alone and with others, we talk and listen. As long as we follow this healthy pendulum movement, we are satisfied with ourselves. We do not respond to what our body or soul actually calls.

For some reason, we do not give ourselves what we need, but something else. We avoid what we need, maybe. Here we come across the phenomenon of compensation.  If we have stress – what would be good for us? Relaxation. It’s slower and is an adequate answer. Instead, we choose a compensation. For example, we smoke or we eat. Instead of relaxing, we treat ourselves to a snack in between activities. And for a moment we feel better.

Another example: we are lonely. To feel better, we feel we need to spend time online or with the social media that makes us feel less alone. What would be a better response to the feeling of loneliness? Visiting the neighbor, inviting a friend, calling somebody, talking to the man. It’s actually quite easy, but something prevents us from doing that, and so we resort to compensation.  Hence are struggle to find a healthy balance.


Prologue (50 lines total):
1. Listen carefully, my son, to the master’s instructions, and attend to them with the ear of your heart. This is the advice from a father who loves you; welcome it, and faithfully put it into practice.
2. The labor of obedience will bring you back to him from whom you had drifted through the sloth of disobedience.

Matthew 7:7-10
“Ask, and it will be given you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For every one who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.

Revised Standard Version (RSV)
Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright © 1946, 1952, and 1971 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Father Mauritius Wilde, OSB, Ph.D., did his philosophical, theological and doctoral studies in Europe. He is the author of several books and directs retreats regularly. He serves as Prior at Sant’Anselmo in Rome.

 

 

HR-Soberness- 3 “Leadership and Soberness” – The Holy Rule of St. Benedict with Fr. Mauritius Wilde OSB Podcast

A leader who is not sober can do a great deal of damage to those for whom he is responsible and, of course, harm the cause he is meant to serve. If you allow yourself to be seized with emotions, such as anger, vindictiveness, sadness, pride or envy – whatever “demons” you want to call them here – then you are not in contact with yourself and not in contact with your people. One is identified with the feeling and has no clear view of the truths. The task of the manager is to decide. However, to make the right decision requires a sober consideration of the alternatives that are given. The leader may need a break to make the right choice. The “discernment of spirits”, like those taught by St. Ignatius of Loyola (1491-1556) is only possible if we can be completely free and open inside, sober and not driven by emotions.  One might follow this rule: When you are very upset, frustrated, angry, fearful, sad, whatever mood you might feel, make no decisions and do not respond immediately to those you lead. Give yourself one night to think about it and pray.  It often happens that after this break, which does not have to be long, you will find a completely different perspective and have time to assess alternatives.  If you do not spontaneously act out of feeling, step back until you are sober and compassionate enough to respond appropriately.

From the Holy Rule of St. Benedict:

CHAPTER XLVI

Of the Election of the Abbot

 He must, therefore, be versed in the divine law, that he may know whence “to bring forth new things and old” (Mt 13:52). Let him be chaste, sober, and merciful, and let him always exalt “mercy above judgment” (Jas 2:13), that he also may obtain mercy.

Let him hate vice, but love the brethren. And even in his corrections, let him act with prudence and not go to extremes, lest, while he aimeth to remove the rust too thoroughly, the vessel be broken. Let him always keep his own frailty in mind, and remember that “the bruised reed must not be broken” (Is 42:3). In this we are not saying that he should allow evils to take root, but that he cut them off with prudence and charity, as he shall see it is best for each one, as we have already said; and let him aim to be loved rather than feared.

Let him not be fussy or over-anxious, exacting, or headstrong; let him not be jealous or suspicious, because he will never have rest. In all his commands, whether they refer to things spiritual or temporal, let him be cautious and considerate. Let him be discerning and temperate in the tasks which he enjoineth, recalling the discretion of holy Jacob who saith: “If I should cause my flocks to be overdriven, they would all die in one day” (Gen 33:13). Keeping in view these and other dictates of discretion, the mother of virtues, let him so temper everything that the strong may still have something to desire and the weak may not draw back. Above all, let him take heed that he keep this Rule in all its detail; that when he hath served well he may hear from the Lord what the good servant heard who gave his fellow-servants bread in season: “Amen, I say to you,” He saith,”he shall set him over all his goods” (Mt 24:47).

If, however, anyone is found to break this rule, let him undergo heavy punishment, unless the needs of guests should arise, or the Abbot should perhaps give a command to anyone. But let even this be done with the utmost gravity and moderation.

Father Mauritius Wilde, OSB, Ph.D., did his philosophical, theological and doctoral studies in Europe. He is the author of several books and directs retreats regularly. He serves as Prior at Sant’Anselmo in Rome.