A reflection for the Gospel reading for Wednesday, August 13 (Mt 18:15-20) by Mother Maria-Michael Newe, OSB.
The only way we really can live is to recognize our own sinfulness and that's what it talks about in the Gospel. I had to laugh as I thought: "If one person tells you something you should listen, but if three do you should really listen!" The only way to lead is to know and to be open to our own weaknesses that we may have compassion and insight for others. If we do not ever know our own wretchedness how will we ever know God's greatness? And I think that's what humility holds for us: as we go lower, and become more open our own wretchedness, we discover the miracle that we are where we are-- that we haven't done worse! I think there's great rejoicing when we see our wretchedness and know that only by God's grace are we not worse. I started thinking about that and I thought "What a wonderful way to begin a day to know we're on our way to God, to heaven, to everlasting life!"
And that is only God's gift. Everything is God's gift. If we could take that and rejoice in the miracles that just get us through the day, we would appreciate more the gift that recognizes God in our life. If we can simply live each day that way there's actually no reason for sorrow, there's no reason to let pride get a hold of us. If we can simply grow in that way, our joy will know no bounds.
Saturday, August 16, 2008
Monday, August 11, 2008
On the Feast of St. Martha, July 29, of this year we received two new Novices into our Community. Sr. Kristina and Sr. Raisa entered the novitiate after completing their time of postulancy. The postulants were received as novices at the ceremony of investiture, during which they were clothed in the Benedictine habit of our Abbey.
Before receiving the white veil and habit, the postulants knelt before the altar to allow Mother Maria-Michael to cut off their hair—a sign that they have chosen to lay down worldly adornments that they may seek God with a pure and undivided heart. On presenting the postulants with the habit, Mother Maria-Michael invoked them to remember the words of St. Paul “Put on the new man who is created according to God’s image,” for their new outward appearance should reflect the inner transformation at work. After donning the habit, each new novice was girded with a belt—the sign of obedience—and the novices’ scapular—a sign of the yoke of our Lord Jesus Christ which they have consented to bear.
Please pray with us that our new novices’ next period of formation will be full of grace as they seek to discern ever deeper the will of God and to hear where His voice is calling them.