July phenology

Holy Wisdom Monastery Care for the Earth, Friends of Wisdom Prairie, Phenology 1 Comment

By Sylvia Marek Phenology is a science focused on observing and recording biological events from year to year and their relationships to the change of seasons and climate. These are the “normal” phenology events we expect to see here and in the Madison area this month. We would love to hear about what you are seeing on the grounds of Holy Wisdom Monastery. Please comment on this post with what you are observing, where at Holy Wisdom and the date you observed the event. July Phenology The following July events are from observations I have recorded over the years: Usually …

Grace in disruption?

Lynne Smith, OSB Living in Community 4 Comments

Since the beginning of Lent, I’ve been slowly reading Michael Casey’s book: Grace On the Journey to God. The title of his first chapter “The Grace of Discontinuity” caught me off guard. Being a person who likes order, I had never thought of discontinuity as a grace. Then COVID-19 hit bringing more discontinuity than any of us could have imagined. When I was thinking about where to find hope in these times, I went back to Casey’s book. Casey would have us appreciate the role of discontinuity in our lives as the thing that moves us along the spiritual journey. …

New books in the library—July 2020

Nancy Sandleback Library Leave a Comment

Enrich your mind and spirit—visit the monastery library! July 2020 If you’ve been wearing a mask wherever you go and practicing social distancing, thank you.  It’s appreciated.  While we can’t all be together yet, you are missed.  Stay safe. The monastery library, a quiet place with a beautiful view and stimulating reading, recently added the following books to its collection: Carter, Warren.  Mark.  Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 2019. Chittister, Joan.  Dear Joan Chittister.  New London, CT: Twenty-Third Publications, 2019. Chittister, Joan.  The Time is Now.  New York: Convergent, 2019. Delio, Ilia.  Birth of a Dancing Star.  Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books, …

Looking Back: “The Last Word,” Arthur Dent, and the Rule (2000)

Brooke Moriarty Benedictine Bridge, Community of Benedict, Looking Back, Monastic Life, Rule of Benedict 1 Comment

Sister Bridget got the last word in many issues of Benedictine Bridge. For some, her writings were a favorite as she mingled Benedictine insight with straightforward thinking. It may even be a surprise to find this writing from the Ordinary Times 2000 issue of our newsletter bringing together Douglas Addams’ character, Arthur Dent, and the founder of western monasticism, St. Benedict. Let me say this about that: 1,500 years is a long time. Put another way, one thousand five hundred years is a mindbogglingly long period of time. Remember Arthur Dent? He was the guy wearing a bathrobe who hitchhiked …

Jim Penczykowski’s Homily from the Feast of Corpus Christi, June 14, 2020

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I want to talk about viaticum today.  Roman Catholics of a certain age will nod knowingly and think of the practice of taking Holy Communion to someone near death.  The term in ancient Rome referred to provision for a journey, literally, “with you on the way”.  I can think of no better expression to offer anyone who is setting out on a journey, even when the destination is clear and without peril. In our time of pandemic and societal unrest if we can sincerely say to one another, “with you on the way”, we are saying a lot. We citizens …

Looking Back: ‘Ecumenical Monastic Life Offers Journey into a New Culture’ (2003) by Erica Thiessen

Brooke Moriarty Benedictine Bridge, Community of Benedict, Interfaith Relations, Living in Community, Looking Back, Monastic Life, Rule of Benedict 1 Comment

In 2003, Erica Thiessen was a novice of Benedictine Women of Madison. In Issue 12 of Benedictine Bridge from Ordinary Time 2003, she wrote this article reflecting on the value of Benedictine life in relation to her own experiences as a Mennonite. I have been journeying into different lands from almost before I was born. My parents were both Russian Mennonite immigrants to Canada. As a family, we traveled to Ghana and Trinidad where my father taught school. In ways, I became a pilgrim, and for much of my adult life, I have lived and worked around the world. Always …

June phenology

Holy Wisdom Monastery Care for the Earth, Friends of Wisdom Prairie, Phenology Leave a Comment

By Sylvia Marek Phenology is a science focused on observing and recording biological events from year to year and their relationships to the change of seasons and climate. These are the “normal” phenology events we expect to see here and in the Madison area this month. We would love to hear about what you are seeing on the grounds of Holy Wisdom Monastery. Please comment on this post with what you are observing, where at Holy Wisdom and the date you observed the event. I have kept monthly phenology records for many years and the following are from my June …

Terry Larson’s Homily from Holy Trinity Sunday, June 7, 2020

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Holy Trinity Sunday, June 7, 2020 Holy Wisdom Sunday Assembly, Terry Larson Genesis 1, I Corinthians 13, Matthew 28 This Sunday is the Feast of the Holy Trinity. The Holy Trinity is a divine mystery which is very difficult for us to wrap our minds around. But we do our best. Two weeks ago I finished a perky homily on these texts which I felt pretty good about…words of comfort and hope that God creator, redeemer, sustainer would fully be with us through these difficult days of the pandemic. And then when the corona virus pandemic was over, we’d live …

Looking Back: ‘New Monastic for a New Millennium’ (2000) by Lynne Smith

Brooke Moriarty Benedictine Bridge, Looking Back, Monastic Life, Rule of Benedict Leave a Comment

It’s difficult to think of Holy Wisdom Monastery without including the sisters. However, back in 2000, Sister Lynne Smith was just stepping into the life with the Sisters of St. Benedict of Madison. 20 years later, only two days after the anniversary when she committed herself officially to this life, we can return to her thoughts from the beginning. The following post is a direct transcription of the article, New Monastic for a New Millennium by Sister Lynne Smith, as written in our newsletter, Benedictine Bridge, Ordinary Times 2000 issue. I am one example of a new monastic for the …

Patti LaCross’ homily from Pentecost Sunday, May 31, 2020

Holy Wisdom Monastery Homilies 1 Comment

If you were asked to share the Good News, what would you say? And if you didn’t know the language, how would you attempt to communicate your faith? And how would that differ from the way you normally communicate? With all the enormous societal disruptions, revelations, fear and loss brought about by this pandemic, I’m among those who appreciate getting out for walks with more birdsong than voices. Last week, a chance encounter and a privileged conversation presented me with the challenge. I met a retired teacher I seldom see, and we had a – distanced – chat:  how our …