Roberta Felker’s Homily from July 24, 2011

Holy Wisdom Monastery Homilies Leave a Comment

Roberta Felker delivered the following homily at Sunday Assembly at Holy Wisdom Monastery on July 24, 2011.  The readings from the common lectionary for the day were 1 Kings 3:5-12, Romans 8:26-39, and Matthew 13:31-33. Most of the gospel readings this month come from a collection of parables, sometimes called the sermon on the water or the Kingdom parables, stories that form the structural and thematic heart of Matthew.  We can view them as concrete examples, intended to help us simple folks who might not otherwise understand these lofty spiritual matters. And it also may be that through parables, Jesus was reminding us …

The Singing Nuns (and non-nuns)

Sarah Noceda, 2011 Volunteer in Community Participant - A Confirmed City Girl looks for God in a Monastery Volunteer in Community Participant Blog Posts 2 Comments

Then there is more singing. Up and down the notes go whizzing between Soprano, Second Soprano, Contralto. It is too high for my range and I find it hard to get enough breath in my lungs between lines. I keep trying. One of the volunteers has a gorgeous soprano and I think she must be careful to keep within the rhythm of the group so as not to break the unity of expression, which in some ways, is the goal. Then there is the Litany of Prayers, which I think is my favorite part. One of the Sisters calls for God …

Wayne Sigelko's Homily from Sunday Assembly on July 17, 2011

Holy Wisdom Monastery Homilies Leave a Comment

Wayne Sigelko delivered the following homily at Sunday Assembly eucharist at Holy Wisdom Monastery on July 17, 2011.  The readings from the common lectionary that day were Isaiah 44:6-8, Romans 8:12-25, and Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43. Weeds and Wailing vs. Wheat and Waiting One of the realities of homily preparation in the 21st century is that you can type a passage into Google and instantly get a couple of dozen commentaries and sermons on the topic.  In doing so with today’s gospel I found that the results could be divided into two neat, if unequal, categories.  The first and far more …

Praise/Prays

Sarah Noceda, 2011 Volunteer in Community Participant - A Confirmed City Girl looks for God in a Monastery Volunteer in Community Participant Blog Posts Leave a Comment

. . . This is fascinating, this whole process-the chanting, the back and forth singing. The reactions it’s producing are almost physical in sensation. I feel rested after Centering Prayer, as if I’d just napped. The Singing of the Psalms and the Chanting (we alternate sitting and standing) puts me into a half-awake state and when I leave at the end I feel energetic and just…Good. After the chanting, there is a secular reading-this week the focus has been Hope. What is Hope? Can Hope be bad? How does one maintain Hope in a Cynical world? Is Hope foolish in the face of …

This praying thing

Sarah Noceda, 2011 Volunteer in Community Participant - A Confirmed City Girl looks for God in a Monastery Volunteer in Community Participant Blog Posts Leave a Comment

Our day at the monastery starts with Centering Prayer. We meet in the Oratory-a kind of small chapel- with an organ, a cross, a small lectern and a large candle at one end. There are four rows of chairs facing one another across a center aisle. One one wall there is an icon of Jesus looking all business-like and yet nice and patient.  . . . The Oratory is silent, the large candle is lit and we file in for what begins our new day. Taking our seats we get comfortable and wait. When she is sure all are in, …

Scripture in the Rule of Benedict and Benedictine Tradition

Lynne Smith, OSB Living in Community, Monastic Life, Rule of Benedict Leave a Comment

One of the things that resonated with me when I began exploring community life at Holy Wisdom Monastery was the focus on Scripture that is so much a part of Benedictine life. The Rule of Benedict includes more than 300 quotations or allusions to Scripture — so many that some have described the Rule as the fruit of Benedict’s lectio on Scripture. Communally, we pray all the Psalms over a five-week period at the Liturgy of the Hours and read through the Bible at least once every two years. In addition to what we read in communal prayer, we also …

The Art and Practice of Lectio Divina

Mary Lynn Adams Benedictine Bridge, Living in Community, Prayer & Worship, Spirituality Articles Leave a Comment

Lectio divina is an ancient way of praying the scriptures. It is more than just reading the Bible; it is reading scripture in a way that takes in the words, seeks out the meaning, responds to the message and rests in the fullness of the Word. Lectio divina is an integral part of the prayer life of Benedictines, along with Liturgy of the Hours, Centering Prayer and Sunday Eucharist. Lectio can be done privately or in a group. When done as personal prayer, it involves four actions. First, we actually read the scripture passage, taking in the words. We read slowly, often out loud. …

That is one Green building!

Sarah Noceda, 2011 Volunteer in Community Participant - A Confirmed City Girl looks for God in a Monastery Volunteer in Community Participant Blog Posts Leave a Comment

The monastery grounds are beautiful and spare and austere and lush all at the same time. Everything about the buildings is light and airy yet solid and secure. Kind of like the Swiss Family Robinson Tree House. The outside is sandy brick studded with solar panels and surrounded with prairie, gardens, fruit trees, and grass as soft as your grandma’s  Berber carpet. There are flowers all around-riots of  yellow coneflowers, purple prairie clover, and white milkweed, all nodding in the heat of the brilliant July noon. And everywhere there is tall and verdant Prairie grass. I imagine this must be what …

Bluebirds are not blue all over

Sarah Noceda, 2011 Volunteer in Community Participant - A Confirmed City Girl looks for God in a Monastery Volunteer in Community Participant Blog Posts Leave a Comment

I learned that today. About bluebirds. They have reddish orange  throats and brownish bodies. But their wings are blue and they are gorgeous when they fly. Like little pieces of sky. Getting up at 6:30 am is getting easier as the days progress. The monastery bells start at 7am and ring every half hour. I appreciate their timekeeping. They are not only a call to prayer for me-I count the ”dings” and then judge from that where I have to be – but also the only timepiece I have since I wear no watch and I have left my phone charger in Chicago. …

Thanks for the ride!

Neal Smith Benedictine Bridge Leave a Comment

Sisters, coworkers, volunteers, friends and acquaintances — twenty-five years is a long time to work at the same place! I’ll always remember the challenges and changes; the comings and goings; the successes and the failures. But most of all I cherish all the wonderful people, from all around the country and world, connected with Holy Wisdom Monastery. May you all be blessed!  Thank you and I’m sure you will see me riding on by in the future. Neal Smith celebrates retirement with a bratwurst.