Oblate Program at Belmont Abbey, NC

6 Good Reasons to Abstain from Meat on Fridays, Even Beyond Lent (0)

April 25, 2017 • Category: Oblate Formation

Go on, be a “fish eater” on Fridays; it will help your whole week A Protestant friend who lived in Philadelphia once said, “You know why those Catholics eat fish on Friday? They’re all Italians, and the Italians have the fish market downtown. So they got the Italian pope to make that rule so they […]

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Benedictine Wisdom»

Not Only for Monks: Bernard of Clairvaux’s Monastic Sermons (Comments Off)

As a Cistercian abbot, St. Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153) had the responsibility of teaching monks through commentary on the Rule of Benedict and Scripture. In partially meeting this responsibility the founder of Clairvaux Abbey, and subsequently named Doctor of the Church, wrote more than 700 sermons in his life. Monastic Sermons, translated by Daniel Griggs […]

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Br. Mark»

The noonday devil (Acedia) and the experience of nothingness (0)

When ask to respond to the invitation to describe the ‘Cistercian charism’ specific to our Order as you desire to live it out in your community? My spontaneous response was this: “I believe that Lectio Divina is at the heart of our charism. Without it, our lives can become too scattered and we can lose […]

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Church Fathers»

God Knows Our Hearts (0)

Mammon is the Hebrew word for “riches;’ just as in Punic the word for “profit” is mammon. What are we to do? What did the Lord command? “Make yourselves friends with the mam­mon of iniquity [dishonest wealth], so that they too, when you begin to fail, may receive you into eternal shelters:” It is easy, […]

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Church News & Info»

Pope Francis: ‘consult the Bible as often as your cellphone’ (Comments Off)

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Sunday called on Christians to consult the Bible with the same frequency as they might consult their cellphones for messages. Speaking to the crowds gathered in St. Peter’s Square following his weekly Angelus blessing, the Pope urged those present to give the Bible the same place in daily life as […]

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Desert Wisdom»

The Meaning of Scripture (Comments Off)

One day some old men came to see Abba Anthony. In the midst of them was Abba Joseph. Wanting to test them, the old man suggested a text from the Scriptures, and, beginning with the youngest, he asked them what it meant. Each gave his opinion as he was able. But to each one the […]

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Human Rights»

The Sin of Usury is Alive and Well (0)

Usury, at least in modern times, has typically been regarded as excessive interest rates, in the order of dozens or even hundreds of percent.  Those of us, of a “certain age”, can recall the stereotypical “loan shark” and his henchmen who fall under the category of usurious money lenders.  Such was not always the case.  […]

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Instruction»

It is the question of a game (Comments Off)

“Businesses, are, in reality, quasi-religious sects. When you go to work in one, you embrace A New Faith. And if they are really big businesses, you progress from faith to a kind of mystique. Belief in the product, preaching the product, in the end the product becomes the focus of a transcendental experience. Through ‘the […]

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Lectio Divina»

Pray Often and Read Often (Comments Off)

For those who practice it, the experience of lectio sacra sharpens perception, enriches understanding, rouses from sloth, banishes idleness, orders life, corrects bad habits, produces salutary weeping and draws tears from contrite hearts . . . curbs idle speech and vanity, awakens longing for Christ and the heavenly homeland. It must always be accompanied by […]

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Liturgy of the Hours»

A canticle a day (0)

Let the ancient words of Mary, Zechariah, or Simeon leave their mark on your heart. One of the most valuable experiences from my boarding school days—and one that has remained with me—is the habit of formal prayer. I remember praying the Nunc Dimittis at night prayer in the quiet of my high school chapel: “Now […]

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Lives of Saints»

The Quiet World of Little Francisco (0)

When we last looked at Fatima, it was the death of little Jacinta Marto — youngest of the three seers. Likewise incredible was her brother, Francisco, little also, for in 1919, when he died a year before she did, he was only ten years only. This was a child whose spiritual maturity brought him beyond […]

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Living the Rule»

Easter Vigil (0)

Before the beginning there was naught, perhaps something impossible to comprehend, no space nor time, there was not even nothing for that would imply the opposite, something, even speaking of the void does not encompass what the before wasn’t it just was not. Then The word spoken, light, pulsating outward, universe expanding ever faster its […]

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Marian»

December 12: Our Lady of Guadelupe (Comments Off)

CNA: In 1531 a “Lady from Heaven” appeared to Saint Juan Diego, a poor Indian from Tepeyac, a hill northwest of Mexico City. She identified herself as the Mother of the True God and instructed him to have the bishop build a church on the site and left an image of herself imprinted miraculously on […]

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Monastery»

Father Edmund McCaffrey, former Belmont abbot, dies at 83 (Comments Off)

CHARLESTON, S.C. — Father Edmund McCaffrey, a retired priest of the Diocese of Charleston who was a former Benedictine monk and former abbot of Belmont Abbey, died Nov. 13, 2016. He died in Louisville, Ky., where he resided with the Little Sisters of the Poor. He was 83. A Mass of Christian Burial will be […]

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Oblate Formation»

6 Good Reasons to Abstain from Meat on Fridays, Even Beyond Lent (0)

Go on, be a “fish eater” on Fridays; it will help your whole week A Protestant friend who lived in Philadelphia once said, “You know why those Catholics eat fish on Friday? They’re all Italians, and the Italians have the fish market downtown. So they got the Italian pope to make that rule so they […]

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Rule»

The mythical nature of work in the modern world (Comments Off)

In our society, a society of business rooted in Puritanism, based on a pseudo-ethic of industriousness and thrift, to be rewarded by comfort, pleasure, and a good bank account, the myth of work is thought to justify an existence that is essentially meaningless and futile. There is, then, a great deal of busy-ness as people […]

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St Benedict»

For the Feast of St. Benedict (Comments Off)

3. Behold, today we celebrate the feast of our holy Father Benedict. What was Saint Benedict? Without a doubt a man like you, like him, like me. His flesh is the same as your flesh. You and he are both of the same material. Why therefore was he able to do what you are not? […]

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Work of God»

Ever heard of the Orthodox rosary called a “komboskini” or “prayer rope”? (Comments Off)

Tradition attributes to St. Pachomius the invention of the prayer rope (a loop, usually made either of virgin wool — symbol of the purity of the Lamb of God — or of silk threads, braided with knots) back in the 4th century, making this devotional accessory as old as monasticism itself. When monks and anchorites began to […]

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