Monday, January 26, 2015

Oblates of Sacred Heart Monastery

Greetings,

We invite you to consider joining the Oblates of Sacred Heart Monastery!
We are welcoming new members during the month of February 2015.

Oblates are Christian men and women of all faiths learning a way of life through Benedictine spirituality and the Rule of St. Benedict. There is no cost except for occasional books. Meetings are held the third Sunday afternoon of each month at 1:00 PM at the monastery. There are also Oblate chapters in Sioux Falls, SD; Omaha and Lincoln, NE; and even online. Follow the link to our website for more information...Oblates of Sacred Heart Monastery.


Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Happy Feast of Saints Maur and Placid!

Happy Feastday!

Today, Benedictines celebrate two saints mentioned in the Book Two of the Dialogues telling about the Life of Saint Benedict.  In chapter seven, Saint Gregory the Great tells the story of Maur walking, well running, upon the water to save young Placid.  The story's emphasis isn't about the miracle, but Maur's humble obedience in following the will of Abbot Benedict and God.  Benedict's Rule teaches that:
"The first degree of humility is obedience without delay. This is the virtue of those who hold nothing dearer to them than Christ; who, because of the holy service they have professed, and the fear of hell, and the glory of life everlasting, as soon as anything has been ordered by the Superior, receive it as a divine command and cannot suffer any delay in executing it.  Of these the Lord says, "As soon as he heard, he obeyed Me".  And again to teachers He says, "He who hears you, hears Me" ... 
But this very obedience will be acceptable to God and pleasing to all only if what is commanded is done without hesitation, delay, lukewarmness, grumbling, or objection.  For the obedience given to Superiors is given to God, since He Himself has said, "He who hears you, hears Me".  And the disciples should offer their obedience with good will, for "God loves a cheerful giver"...   (Rule of Benedict Chapter 5).  

Benedict calls for not only a faithful obedience to the superior but also a cheerful and heartfelt obedience to our community (Rule of Benedict, Chapter 71). Celebrating this dual Feast of Saints Maur and Placid is call for us to celebrate our loving service to each other.  We invite you to read Saint Gregory the Great's story of the young saints and find a word or two to call you to care for your community today.
Once while blessed Benedict was in his room, one of his monks, the boy Placid, went down to get some water. In letting the bucket fill too rapidly, he lost his balance and was pulled into the lake, where the current quickly seized him and carried him about a stone's throw from the shore. Though inside the monastery at the time, the man of God was instantly aware of what had happened and instantly called out to Maurus: "Hurry, Brother Maurus! The boy who just went down for water has fallen into the lake, and the current is carrying him away!  
What followed was remarkable indeed, and unheard of since the time of Peter the apostle! Maurus asked for the blessing and on receiving it hurried out to fulfill his abbot's command. He kept on running even over the water until he reached the place where Placid was drifting along helplessly. Pulling him up by the hair, Maurus rushed back to shore, still under the impression that he was on dry ground that he came to himself and looking back realized that he had been running on the surface of the water. Overcome with fear and amazement at a deed he would never have thought possible, he returned to his abbot and told him what had taken place. 
The holy man would not take any personal credit for the deed but attributed it to the obedience of his disciple. Maurus on the contrary claimed that it was due entirely to his abbot's command. He could not have been responsible for the miracle himself, he said, since he had not even known he was performing it. While they were carrying on this friendly contest of humility, the question was settled by the boy who had been rescued. "When I was being drawn out of the water," he told them, "I saw the abbot's cloak over my head; he is the only I thought was bringing me to shore."  
Peter:  What marvelous deeds these are! they are sure to prove inspiring to all who hear of them. Indeed, the more you tell me about this great man, the more eager I am to keep on listening (Book Two of the Dialogues: Life of Saint Benedict Chapter 7).
Blessings and Happy Feast!

Saturday, January 10, 2015

The Christmas Season Concludes: A Final Christmas Memory

Greetings,

The recent Yankton Benedictines newsletter shared stories from our Sisters' Christmases past...

Sr. Marielle remembers the musical tradition mentioned by Sr. Rosemary. The boarders at Mount Marty College and High School were also treated to this tradition which continued up through the early 1970's at MMC.  Sr. Marielle remembers that the Sisters would come to wake up the Mount Marty High School students with beautiful singing before Christmas. Sisters also signed up to go caroling at Sacred Heart Hospital to whomever was in the hospital at Christmas time.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

The Christmas Season Continues: A Third Christmas Memory

Greetings,

The recent Yankton Benedictines newsletter shared stories from our Sisters' Christmases past...

Sister Bernard would play her violin and other Sister-singers would go throughout the monastery playing and singing to wake all for Christmas Midnight Mass. Sr. Rosemary remembers that, "As a candidate, I did not know of this tradition. When I woke up, I thought I must have died and gone to heaven, the music was so beautiful."

Friday, January 2, 2015

The Christmas Season Continues: Another Christmas Memory

Greetings,

The recent Yankton Benedictines newsletter shared stories from our Sisters' Christmases past...

Midnight Mass at the monastery was also a beautiful tradition. Some people in the area would plan their whole Christmas celebration around it. The chapel was so full, extra chairs often had to be set up. Sr. Angeline, who grew up in Yankton, remembers that she and other little girls in their white first communion dresses would take part in a procession before Mass. Mother Jerome carried up the statue of the baby Jesus on a white satin pillow, with the girls following with streamers. In later years, postulants in white gowns replaced the children in the procession.