Wisdom Story #6: Listening for Wisdom

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A retreatant reads on the Benet House hermitage patio at St. Mary Monastery, Rock Island, Illinois.

Ask a Catholic Benedictine Sister for her wisdom, and she’s likely to tell you a story. Why?  Because wisdom comes through listening and being. This is the 6th story in our Wisdom Series.

Making decisions about major life changes can be tough. What’s best? How can we recognize the wisest path?

“Well, if you are asking the question you are a seeker, so you already have some wisdom,” Sister Catherine Cleary, OSB muses. Continue Reading

Wisdom Story #5: Claim Your Miracles

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Sisters Mary Jean Feeney, Margaret Murphy and Rita Cain enjoy coffee in the monastery dining room.

Ask a Catholic Benedictine Sister for her wisdom, and she’s likely to tell you a story. Why?  Because wisdom comes through listening and being. This is the 5th story in our Wisdom Series.

On her first visit home after joining the community, Sister Rita Cain, OSB remembers being full of religious fervor.

She had brought a Benedictine medal to pin to the sleeper of her sister’s new baby. He had been quite ill and Sr. Rita wanted to help him get better. Continue Reading

Wisdom Story#4: Listen to Your Elders

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Sister Marilyn Ring enjoys spending time with her young pen pal.

Ask a Catholic Benedictine Sister for her wisdom, and she’s likely to tell you a story. Why?  Because wisdom comes through listening and being. This is the 4th story in our Wisdom Series.

Sister Marilyn Ring credits her elders with teaching her hospitality, compassion, a spirituality of life and love.

“The elders taught me that it wasn’t all about me. For example, the work wasn’t done until everyone was finished. If there were dishes to be washed, they were our responsibility. I learned to focus on the ‘we,’ not the ‘me.’” Continue Reading

Peace and Joy in Community

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Our annual summer silent retreat is underway, and we are going to share it with you.

You can make this retreat at home, if you wish, by reading each reflection and taking time to reflect, journal, sit in silence or walk quietly through a beautiful place.

By Sister Stefanie MacDonald, OSB

Living in community is the best counterweight against individualism in our society today.

And individualism – the Me-First attitude – exacts a high toll on those who pursue it relentlessly. Continue Reading

Work: Making Something Beautiful for God

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Our annual summer silent retreat is underway, and we are going to share it with you.

You can make this retreat at home, if you wish, by reading each reflection and taking time to reflect, journal, sit in silence or walk quietly through a beautiful place.

By Sister Stefanie MacDonald, OSB

Monks “live by the labor of their hands” (RB 72).

In many ways, everyone does.

Whether you plow a farm field or fold towels at home, work contributes to your well being as well as the well being of your community. Continue Reading

The Grace and Mercy of Reconciliation

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Our annual summer silent retreat is underway, and we are going to share it with you.

You can make this retreat at home, if you wish, by reading each reflection and taking time to reflect, journal, sit in silence or walk quietly through a beautiful place.

By Sister Mary Core, OSB

Yesterday afternoon, we celebrated the Sacrament of Reconciliation as we do during our annual retreat.

Of course, I – like many Catholics – still tend to think of Reconciliation more as “confession.” Continue Reading

Hospitality: A Sacramental Grace

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Our annual summer silent retreat is underway, and we are going to share it with you.

You can make this retreat at home, if you wish, by reading each reflection and taking time to reflect, journal, sit in silence or walk quietly through a beautiful place.

By Sister Stefanie MacDonald, OSB

Monasteries are known for their hospitality … but the word “hospitality” doesn’t adequately describe what it means. Continue Reading