Rule of St. Benedict: Chapter 35: On the Weekly Servers in the Kitchen, March 13, 2017

March 13, July 13, November 12
Chapter 35: On the Weekly Servers in the Kitchen

Let the brethren serve one another, and let no one be excused from
the kitchen service
except by reason of sickness or occupation in some important work.
For this service brings increase of reward and of charity. But let
helpers be provided for the weak ones, that they may not be
distressed by this work; and indeed let everyone have help, as
required by the size of the community or the circumstances of the
locality. If the community is a large one,
the cellarer shall be excused from the kitchen service; and so also
those whose occupations are of greater utility, as we said above.
Let the rest serve one another in charity.

The one who is ending his week of service shall do the cleaning on
Saturday. He shall wash the towels with which the brethren wipe
their hands and feet; and this server who is ending his week, aided
by the one who is about to begin, shall wash the feet of all the
brethren. He shall return the utensils of his office to the
cellarer clean and in good condition,
and the cellarer in turn shall consign them to the incoming server,
in order that he may know what he gives out and what he receives

Some thoughts
Whenever I read this chapter, I am always struck by the homiism, if that is a word and according to the spellcheck it isn’t but it should be. Housework and meal preparation go in every home, and with his famed attention to detail, Benedict tells us how to make it work not only in the community but also out here in the world.
Seems to me that if a group of people take turns doing the housework and the cooking, instead of expecting one person to do it all, there will be a great deal of peace and harminy in communal living situations.

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