JULY 2, 2019
FEAST OF ST. BENEDICT
Br. Michael Gallagher, OSB | Holy Cross Monastery
Feast of St. Benedict—July 11
Fifteen hundred years ago Benedict wrote a Rule for his monks, “a little rule that we have written for beginners.” (RB 73.8) We have nothing else that he wrote.
All we know of him biographically is provided by Pope Gregory the Great, in Book Two of his Dialogues on the Life and Miracles of St. Benedict (bef. 594 AD).
Yet he is called the father of Western Monasticism and the Patron Saint of Europe.
How is it that such a man is still read and followed in our world of today? Why do we in Community of Hope read that Rule and its commentary every day?
The Benedictine spirit can be characterized simply as: searching for God in and through community—and so his words still speak to us today.
We are slowly coming to the realization that the rugged individualism, the go-it-alone spirit of our day is coming up as lacking, but we fail to identify clearly what might give us a sense of purpose, a sense of belonging that united us in times past.
Benedict’s Rule highlights such qualities as humility, mutual obedience, hospitality to the stranger, care for the sick and the poor, prayer in common, the qualities of a good leader. These are all important factors in the ordering of good community and ultimately ensure the cohesiveness and health of that community.
We need to recapture the spirit that unites us in community—on a family level, on a church level, on a local and national level, and ultimately on the world stage. For if we fail to do this, we will continue to fight for power and supremacy in a world that desperately needs us to model behavior that underscores what we have in common and what unites us as human beings—beings made in the image and likeness of our God, our God who is mutual love itself in the dynamism of the Trinity.
That is our ultimate destiny, to be wrapped up in the life and love of the Trinity, the reason for which we were created.
That is why we still remember and honor St. Benedict fifteen hundred years later, for helping us not to forget what we are all about.
APRIL 8, 2019
DOING GOD'S WORK
By Laura Masterson | COHI Board President
Do you remember the last time you really connected with something in the Bible? What is it like for you to read Scripture in a way that changes you?
Since we have been thinking about mission and have touched on recognizing Paul's letters as pivotal in our understanding of mission involving the uniqueness of every human, I felt moved to include some guiding questions while we read scripture that may lead us toward a deeper understanding of God's movement within us as we read. (Taken from Becoming the Gospel, M. Gorman, Eerdmans Publishing, 2015)
-What do these texts say, implicitly or explicitly, about the missional character of God?
-What do the texts reveal about humanity and the world?
-What do the texts say about the nature and mission of God's people in the world/about the church being understood as an agent of divine mission?
-How do these texts relate to the larger scriptural witness, in both testaments, to the missio Dei and the mission of God's people?
-In our specific CoHI context, how might we deliberately read this text as God's call to us as the people of God to participate in the missio Dei to which it bears witness?
May the Word of God open your heart to listening and mobilize your feet to loving.
Lenten Blessings, Laura