Rule of Benedict
A practical guide of spirituality
We are inspired by the Rule of Benedict and seek to provide a place where all are invited to continue their spiritual journey.
While living in Italy during the 6th century, Benedict of Nursia wrote a guide for community life, which he called a “little rule for beginners.” This Rule quickly became the foundation for monastic communities across Europe, giving direction for ordinary people wanting to live the Christian life.
Disciples came to Benedict’s small cave, seeking guidance in their search for God. Benedict and his followers founded monasteries for both women and men throughout Europe. These monasteries served as places of hope and hospitality and as a witness to God’s love during dark periods of history. At Monte Cassino, Benedict wrote his monastic rule, drawing on many years of experience and wisdom.
Fifteen centuries after its creation, the key values in the Rule are pertinent to ordinary life. Short in length and translated in many languages, the Rule suggests ways to seek and celebrate God through:
- embracing change
- respect for people
The Rule envisions a community that works to support each person’s developing relationship with God and others. Members live and work together, seeking God through living the Christian life. The Rule highlights a balance of daily work and prayer. No work is unimportant. The purpose of work is to provide service to others and an opportunity for personal development.
The Benedictine tradition lives through the centuries as a testament to the strength and applicability of its message. Modern Benedictine communities live the values of the Rule in ways that apply to their local environment and to the unique skills of each member.
To learn more, read articles about Benedictine spirituality and values.
For more information, contact Mary David Walgenbach, OSB, prioress at (608) 831-9300; Joanne Kollasch, OSB, first councilor at (608) 831-9302 or Lynne Smith, OSB, director of membership and monastic formation at (608) 831-9305.