Family Tools of Love #1

One of the most famous sayings of St. Benedict was Ora et Labora (prayer and work). Not only do Benedictine monks pray (a lot), they work hard. Manual labor requires tools. St. Benedict thought the spiritual life also required tools. He believed it takes craftsmanship to build the spiritual life in a cloistered community. That is why he came up with "tools of the trade for the labor of building a spiritual community" (Robinson, 32).

David Robinson, in his book The Family Cloister: Benedictine Wisdom for the Home, has adapted St. Benedict's spiritual tools of the trade and calls them the "Family Tools of Love." He also divided them into 52 weeks, each with a scripture verse, for reflection. I plan to post these tools weekly in a visible place so that my family and I can ponder the words. Eventually, we will have a family meeting and discuss them together as well.

Here is this week's reflection:
Be willing to suffer for the sake of justice and truth (Matthew 5:10)

1 comment:

  1. I haven't read a lot on St. Benedict--but I love that Ora et Labora! Since a mom's work entails a fair share of manual labor, I like to picture myself "washing the dishes for Christ" (instead of griping to myself "why does my husband leave dishes in the sink?!). It really lifts my mood!

    The reflection of being willing to suffer for justice and truth I think is a very hard concept for those of us in rich Western countries--we don't even want to "suffer" cooking a meal from scratch vs. order pizza. To me, this reflection relates to my fear that someone may not agree with Catholicism--so I just don't make my faith known. I have to pray for the strength to be able to endure the suffering of self-consciousness or even rejection while I share the Truth.

    Thanks for the thoughts to ponder!


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