Wednesday, 11 July 2007

St Benedict

It's the feast of St Benedict today. Love this piccie of him- doesn't he look like Fr Benedict Groeschel there?- Well I think so.

This is the saint who held firm as the Roman Empire collapsed in on itself drowning in its own immorality. Benedict saw his fellow students living the life of the secular modern world and was so horrified he left and went to live in the mountains.

He wanted to live as a hermit and God did permit this for a time but God has His own plans and in the end Benedict founded a whole order of monks and priests who renewed the face of the earth. It was their monasteries and schools that helped Europe stay sane.

Benedict had a twin sister called Scholastica who followed her brother to the mountains and with his support she set up her own order. So they worked side by side to bring people to the Gospel and out of the darkness around them.

Benedict wrote his RULE which is about love of God, obedience and humility as well as prayer and work. It is a simple rule which we can all learn from.

I have had to learn obedience and humility coming out of the Cafeteria where disobedience and being one's own pope was a way of life. It's been a tough lesson and I hope I will learn it well enough that in the end I will be worthy to receive a new name on a white stone.

The present Holy Father took the name Benedict after spending some time at his grave I believe. Bizarrely I had predicted he would take that name-but was quite stunned when he did. LOL. I thought that whoever took over from John Paul the Great would have the task of renewing the Church in a modern world that seems to be imploding on its own nastiness.

I jumped for joy when I saw Joseph Ratzinger step onto the balcony that day and then he said his name would be Benedict.

The last Pope Benedict- Benedict XV- took us through World War I and worked incredibly hard to put a stop to that war and broker peace. It will be to our lasting shame that the Brits, mainly I am sure because of the inherent anti-Catholicism here, refused to listen to him and the slaughter went on. I believe that is Papa Beni XV had been listened to WWI would have ended sooner with a lot less bloodshed and WWII may never have happened.

Our Papa Beni is leading us to a war of peace. In humility and obedience we need to listen to him.

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