Mike Sweitzer-Beckman's Sermon from February 13, 2011

Mike Sweitzer-Beckman Homilies, Sunday Assembly Leave a Comment

The following homily was delivered by Mike Sweitzer-Beckman at Sunday Assembly on February 13, 2011.  The readings from the lectionary schedule that day were I Corinthians 2:6-10 and Matthew 5:21-37. Mike was raised a Roman Catholic at St. Bernard’s in Middleton, and earned his Master of Divinity degree in 2008 from the Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley. He now works with the sisters as their communications and IT coordinator. Last January 12, I had a chance to go down to the state capitol and watch my wife, Erica, get affirmed into the state bar association inside the chambers of …

Colleen Hartung's Homily from February 6, 2011

Holy Wisdom Monastery Homilies Leave a Comment

The following homily was delivered by Colleen Hartung at Sunday Assembly on February 6, 2011.  The Gospel reading from the lectionary schedule that day was Matthew 5:13-20. “You are the salt of the earth”. “You are the light of the world”. “A city built on a hill cannot be hidden. No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket”. “In the same way, let your light shine before others”. With these words Jesus names the gathered crowd as salt and as light…as preservers of life and illuminators of wisdom. In a sense he chooses and urges these …

I Don't See Where the Sisters Live at Holy Wisdom Monastery

Lynne Smith, OSB Living in Community

Guests at the monastery often ask one of us sisters, “Where do you live?” The question usually means do you live in the monastery building. The sisters’ monastic residence is located in the woods a short walking distance from the monastery building. For us the entire monastery is the place where we pray, work, minister, study, receive guests, recreate and find solitude and nightly rest. It is also the place of our final rest. Holy Wisdom Monastery is the home for all of these activities. The monastery building, the Retreat and Guest House, the grounds, prairie and Lost Lake we …

Ed Beers' Homily from January 30, 2011

Holy Wisdom Monastery Homilies, Prayer & Worship, Sunday Assembly Leave a Comment

The following homily was delivered by Rev. Ed Beers at Sunday Assembly on January 30, 2011. The readings from the lectionary schedule that day were Micah 6:1-8, I Corinthians 1:18-31, and Matthew 5:1-12. A few years before becoming a Trappist monk, Thomas Merton, then a student at Columbia in New York City, was especially fond of his English professor, Mark VanDoren. In his autobiography Merton described how VanDoren entered the lecture hall, already deep in thought,and how he would open the class with a single question, as he stared pensively out the massive windows, wondering if the answer might mystically appear. …

The Prairie Never Hibernates

Greg Armstrong Benedictine Bridge, Care for the Earth, Natural Resources, Nature Notes 1 Comment

The cold and snow of winter dramatically changethe landscape at Holy Wisdom Monastery. Snowy days have a soft beauty about them as nearly everything gets covered with snow, and the plants and landforms become smooth and round. The softness even muffles sounds. When the sun comes out, these subtle forms glisten in the light. How different from the warm, sometimes steamy scenes of summer. Although cold, it is a very beautiful time to visit the prairies, woodlands, and wetlands of Holy Wisdom Monastery. Come and enjoy the beauty and calm of winter by participating in a personal retreat or walking on the nature trails. The …

Sisters Receive Many Commendations from the Federation of Saint Gertrude

Holy Wisdom Monastery Benedictine Bridge, Monastic Life Leave a Comment

From December 12-14, Benedictine Women of Madison received a visit from Joella Kidwell, OSB, President of the Federation of Saint Gertrude; and Margaret Michaud, OSB, St. Bede Monastery. Every monastery belonging to the Federation of Saint Gertrude receives a visit from the federation president every five years. It’s a time to check in about what is going well at the monastery and a time to evaluate what might be improved. Sisters Joella and Margaret made 11 commendations for the work at Holy Wisdom Monastery, including: The successful creation of an ecumenical monastic community since their last visit and the admission of one …

Making New Year's Resolutions?

Lynne Smith, OSB Living in Community Leave a Comment

The following reading from midday prayer on January 3 sheds a gentle light on New Year’s resolutions: Benedict believes the question “Who longs for life?” is asked every day, and every day offers a new opportunity to respond positively. New Year’s resolutions may be a cliche, but the new year is an opportunity to think about new beginnings. Make a very short and realistic list this year, keep it where you will see it often, and check your progress (or lack!) regularly. Benedict reminds us not to dwell on it, but to thank God if today was good, ask forgiveness …

Saint Benedict’s Rule: Guide for the Ages

Holy Wisdom Monastery Rule of Benedict, Spirituality Articles Leave a Comment

“Listen, child of God, to the guidance of your teacher. Attend to the message you hear and make sure that it pierces to your heart…” –Prologue to the Rule 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.” The Rule of Benedict quickly became the foundation for monastic communities across Europe, giving direction for ordinary people wanting to live extraordinarily well. The spirituality of the Rule is essentially lay in its origins. Eager disciples came to Benedict’s small cave, seeking guidance in their search …

Advent: The Season of Waiting at Holy Wisdom Monastery

Mike Sweitzer-Beckman Benedictine Bridge, Prayer & Worship, Sunday Assembly Leave a Comment

November 28 marked the first Sunday of Advent for this calendar year, simultaneously marking the first day of the new church year on the liturgical calendar. Advent stems from the Latin word Adventus, meaning ‘coming.’ In the Christian tradition it is a reminder of the time period that the Hebrews spent waiting for the birth of Jesus Christ. The celebration of Advent at Holy Wisdom Monastery with the Sunday Assembly community stems from the sisters’ visions and values as an ecumenical Benedictine community. In 2001, the Benedictine Women of Madison established the Monastic Ritual Team, which oversees all prayer and worship activities at …

Advent Meditation

Lynne Smith, OSB Living in Community Leave a Comment

As we travel through these days of Advent, I would like to share the following poem with you as an Advent meditation. This poem comes from A Tree Full of Angels, Seeking the Holy in the Ordinary, by Macrina Wiederkehr, OSB.: Climbing down through the stars to the stars on earth The divine face meshing with the human Heaven touching earth We call it Incarnation! You came as a star led by a star through the stars to the stars We never knew we were stars until you came. O God, we welcome you We lovingly share our frail human …