Chapter 3: On Calling the Brethren for Counsel, September 17, 2016

January 17, May 18, September 17
Chapter 3: On Calling the Brethren for Counsel

In all things, therefore, let all follow the Rule as guide,
and let no one be so rash as to deviate from it.
Let no one in the monastery follow his own heart’s fancy;
and let no one presume to contend with his Abbot
in an insolent way or even outside of the monastery.
But if anyone should presume to do so,
let him undergo the discipline of the Rule.
At the same time,
the Abbot himself should do all things in the fear of God
and in observance of the Rule,
knowing that beyond a doubt
he will have to render an account of all his decisions
to God, the most just Judge.

But if the business to be done in the interests of the monastery
be of lesser importance,
let him take counsel with the seniors only.
It is written,
“Do everything with counsel,
and you will not repent when you have done it” (Eccles. 32:24).


Some thoughts:

By all means, let’s follow the Rule as a guide. What does that mean to you?
I love the bit about no one following his own heart’s fancy. While no doubt a reference to stability maybe it is also one to relationships. Each monastic (and this includes the abbess/abbot) has a relationship with God intermingled with relationships with each other in the community as a whole as well as with the Rule and the abbess/abbot.
What might this mean for us today?

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